Vote Right

A DJ on a popular Charlotte radio station said yesterday when talking about the history that Barack Obama would make by being elected to the United States Presidency, “I have a black friend who doesn’t know who she wants to vote for but, is going to vote for Obama because he’s black.” Martin Luther King, Jr. would roll over in his grave if Barack gets elected based on his color. Remember the famous “I Have a Dream” speech, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” If you’re going to vote for Obama, then do it for the right reasons-vote for him because you think he’s capable or because you share his same values or because you like his policies but by all means don’t vote for him because of his color lest the great work of Martin Luther King, Jr. be in vain.

Likewise, ladies, don’t cast your vote for Sarah Palin based on gender. I know it would be vogue to make history by electing either of these candidates but a decision based on traits as superficial as color or gender might create a history that we’ll later regret.

Just as absurd, I work with an MD who said, “I was considering not even voting . . .” Don’t do that. Don’t check out of this election because you’re on the fence; don’t put the history of this election in other’s hands by “wussing” out. This election is not the election to surrender your right to vote. It’s historical, it’s volatile, and it’s arguably the most important election of modern times. Weigh the sides and make a decision. Get out and vote for someone; write in a candidate, vote Ron Paul, vote for Fred Flintstone for all I care but, whatever you do, don’t sit idle on the sidelines with so much at stake.

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5 responses to “Vote Right

  1. I agree with you 2 out of 3. There is nothing wrong with ‘checking out’ of an election if you don’t have a strong preference (or, just don’t know). In fact, that is the more responsible choice than going into a voting booth and casting a vote in an election about which you don’t care/know nothing.

  2. I appreciate and respect your comment. I would think, though, that by not voting, you silence any credibility if you decide to later bad mouth the elected administration. I guess the idea behind “the right to vote” is that using that right is your choice. While I respect your choice, realize that there are people in other countries who would die (or perhaps have already died) for that right. Embrace your freedom–get out and let your voice be heard!

  3. Along with rights comes a responsibility to use those rights responsibly. Voting in an election you know nothing about, or for/against candidates you know nothing about, or in cases where you have no clear preference, just because you didn’t want to ‘sit idle’, is not a responsible use of that right IMHO. It merely dilutes the voice of people who do know and do care, and has no good effect. (As an extreme analogy, if we have the right to bear arms does that mean everyone should go buy a gun and fire it at something?)

    As for ‘bad mouthing’ the resulting administration, people who didn’t vote have just as much credibility as anyone who did vote: they can threaten to vote them out in the next election. (This is the only real corrective force on a bad governor anyway.) And, presumably, they will – because if it gets to the point where someone feels the need to ‘bad mouth’ an administration, then surely he’s no longer apathetic, he’ll have an informed preference the next time an election comes around. Then he should vote.

    Don’t get me wrong, anyone who is eligible to vote and wants to, should. But to feel like one has to vote just for the sake of voting is misguided and basically just adds meaningless/random noise to the vote totals. my 2 cents

    best

  4. You raise very valid points. Good analogy without the “…and fire it at something?”, yes, extreme with it. However, you are putting words in my mouth–I never insinuated that “one has to vote just for the sake of voting.” I merely suggested that one should get informed and weigh in through voting due to the magnitude of this election. Hear me, I’m not patting myself on the back for being some sort of voting saint, I have missed my share of elections, I just think that this is a biggy to miss. I do like the word you used for those who don’t vote though, “apathetic.”

    Thanks for your response!

  5. Looks like we agree more than I thought then. If someone gets informed, then of course, vote. But not just for the sake of voting. Best,

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