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The vote

I didn't vote in the primary. Mostly because I forgot to vote early and couldn't afford to drive 200 miles to the polls on Feb 5. Obama carried Illinois no matter how I would have voted. I don't know how I will vote in the general election. I'll have to see who is left by then. No matter how I vote, it does give me hope that a black man and a woman are making a serious bid for the presidency. Because it means that at least some of that stuff about how anyone can be president that they told us when we were kids might be true.

But I do have to say, given who will probably be running that I don't think it matters who you vote for in the general election...if all you do is vote.

I'm inundated daily by campaign ads on TV and radio and bumper stickers (one of the best I saw was "Monica Lewinsky's ex boyfriend's wife for president!") and yard signs and even email spam. Luckily I've not been living at the farm where I am registered to vote so I've not gotten the door to door folks.

I've gotten several chain type emails pointing out what is wrong with this country and what candidate would be best to vote for to stop or start something.

So to all of the creators of these ads and the people who slap them on their cars or shove them in the ground in the front yard, I have this to say: If you think your responsibility towards government ends with going to vote, then you deserve whatever government you get.

Don't get me wrong. I'm glad people go and vote at all as so many just stay home. I was always taught that if you don't vote, you don't have the right to bitch. So I'm not going to bitch about the primaries.

But unfortunately for too many people, bitching is the extent of their participation in the governmental process. They think government should solve all their problems. They forget about the "by the people" and focus on the "for the people" part.

I received an email chain letter from my dad not long ago. I'm convinced he sends these things to me because he knows I'll write a long scathing editorial about them and mail it back to everyone on his distribution list. It was about some special interest group or another wanting to remove the words, "in God We Trust" from the back of all the money or some darned thing.

I did write a long scathing editorial about it but here's what I said in a nutshell. "The reason special interest groups are able to get stupid things like this passed is because people like all of you who took the time to forward this chain of email won't do anything else about it. If you took the time it took to type your name on the bottom of this chain and find 40 friends to forward it on to, and wrote a letter to your local elected official or better yet, called them up and bitched, you would be making far more progress than this stupid chain email ever will."

People in special interest groups are often very annoying to others. But that is why they are able to further their agenda. Aside from the fact they usually file the most lawsuits, they are also tireless in bugging the holy living shit out of elected officials from your local alderman on up to the President. Shit may roll downhill but hot air rises to the top. And people in Special Interest Groups and PACs have an inexhaustible supply of hot air. So while you are bitching to your email list about how they made Alabama remove the 10 commandments from the state judicial building, there is some mother or teacher or retired person bugging the crap out of some mayor to the point he promises to talk to the State rep about getting prayer taken out of school. And the State rep is getting it from all the other mayors and members of the Special Interest Groups until he/she proposes a State bill and on and on while the rest of you watch the results on the news.

By all means get out and vote. Vote because you want to see a black man elected president or a woman or vote for a war hero or vote because you think a democrat will give you more religious freedom. There are a hundred reasons to vote. Just don't let that be the only message you send or you will be ultimately disappointed somewhere down the road.




( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 14th, 2008 01:55 am (UTC)
This election season has been the worst of them all.
Feb. 14th, 2008 04:20 am (UTC)
And it doesn't look to improve either.

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )


Wander aka StoneBear
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