Today’s election day in the US, and for anyone reading who might be in the US, I hope you’ve taken the time to participate in the election. There are so many local races that affect everyday life that don’t get the attention of the top of the ticket.
With that being said, do you have a favorite political book? I don’t. I only have two and I haven’t read them yet, though that should be changing soon. Many politicians have published a book at some point in their careers and regardless of what we may think of the so called political establishment, I think it’d be fascinating to learn about what goes into their day-to-day mindset.
2020 is the first time so many different organizations from different aspects of American life have gotten together and made a concerted effort to encourage people to vote. Many would argue it’s because of the current President. The US has continually had very low voter participation the last few decades. Some states and towns are more active than others, of course, but as a whole tens of millions simply do not exercise their right to vote.
There are a litany of reasons for this I won’t go into. It’s gotten to the point that simply encouraging citizens to participate in the election of their officials is an exercise in partisanship. I could volunteer for a nonprofit that helps people get registered to vote (and doesn’t tell them who they should vote for) and somehow it’s a statement against this person or that one.
In Harris County, TX there are nearly 5 million people. I was looking into a candidate recently before going to the polls and I checked up on their electoral history. They’d won a previous race with 16k votes. There are more than 2 million registered voters in the county. Those 16k people hardly would be considered representative of the 2 million voters or 5 million residents, but they voted and wielded great power.
We could go town to town and see similar situations play out every election year. It’s none of my business who you vote for or why. Maybe you’ve already mailed in your ballot or you’re making a plan to go in person, the how is up to you. Democracy doesn’t work when everyone stays home.
In the midst of a pandemic it’s understandable that many are still hesitant to go out in public unnecessarily. I’m 28 and for seven months I’ve stayed home as much as possible. In Texas I’m not given the ability to vote by mail. So I’ll be voting early, right around the time this goes live.
If you’re in the US make a plan to vote. Know the hours of your voting location or mail in your ballot as soon as you can. There are countless nonpartisan websites that will help you get to know local candidates if they’re unknown to you.
Obviously this isn’t a blog on politics. And obviously I don’t expect people to have the same viewpoint as I do. But election day is less than a week away. Millions of people have already cast their ballot during early voting. The 45th president of the United States is on the verge of being elected. So I decided to make this video to stress the importance of voting in our democracy. Sure I talk about Hillary, but I also discuss the significance of simply having the right to vote as we do.
The important thing isn’t for you to agree with me or the candidate I’m voting for, but rather that you have a say in who leads the country and community in which you live.
I’d intended to save whatever poems I decided to write for the weekends, but now I’m changing my mind. Sue me.
Did you know that it was Election Day on Tuesday? Maybe you knew, but I bet you didn’t vote. Cause something like 40 percent of eligible voters vote in midterm elections. That’s fine. If you don’t want to have have some small say in who represents you at the federal level, but more importantly at the state and local levels, then be my guest. But this isn’t a political post. Or even one that outlines why you should always vote. Nope. This is about respect.
I don’t care if you identify as a Republican or Democrat or Independent. I don’t. Because your political and social views mean absolutely nothing to me. And I’m near certain that mine mean the same to you, whether you’ll say it out loud or not. But something happened this week that I’d hope most Americans would be disgusted by. It was something with President Obama. No, I’m not going to go on a rant about what he’s had to endure during his time in the White House. This is just one event I’m going to talk about.
Did you watch it? Even though the title of the clip says all you need to know. I hope you recognize that this is not okay. I fully recognize that a lot of people disagree with President Obama on many issues. And I also recognize that there are plenty of racists out there. Hopefully you don’t deny this fact. Anyway, I have a story for you. I was too young to have an educated opinion when George W. Bush was first elected in 2000. But I was able to form my own opinions on things for the first time during his presidency. My opinion of President Bush as a person or of his policies is irrelevant. Why?Because I would never have exhibited such disrespect for the man who was the President of the United States.
I’m not saying that you need to treat President Obama as if he’s some greater being than you or I, but I will say that he is the President of the UNITED STATES. Your president. If you didn’t vote for him, fine. If you disagree with his position on every issue, fine. If you’re counting down the days until he’s out of office, fine. The thing is that you personally know people who you also disagree with on just about every issue, but you still manage to work with each other or coach Little League without any disrespect exchanged between the two of you. Why should you treat the president any differently?
Vote. Call your representative. Protest. Volunteer for a campaign. Do pretty much whatever you want, but I’d hope you agree that this caller was in the wrong.
Showing some respect toward the president is no different from doing so with your neighbor. He’s a person just like you trying to do an incredibly difficult job.