In light of this polarizing, controversial election, let us not lose sight on the significance of today. Whoever wins tonight will lead our country for the next four years. Let that sink in... When you're done, here are some huge reasons to take your voting rights seriously.
It’s not just about the Presidency…
Your vote has the power to effect change at the congressional and local levels. Don’t like your current public education system? Change it!
NJ residents who are still reeling from the recent hike in gas tax have the ability to decide where that money is spent! Your vote has more power than you think.
For those close calls…
Remember when Bush squeezed past Gore in 2000 by a few hundred votes? That’s a few hundred people. In a country of over 200 million eligible voters, we’re talking about a millionth of a percent. While some may argue that one vote may not “really” count, let’s remember that…
Collectively, we can make a difference…
Have you ever read “Horton Hears a Who?” In the book's finale, it is a single small voice that makes a difference and literally saves the world. But that small voice was one of a myriad of other small voices, participating in this life-saving endeavor. He was one of many…but his singularity was part of a larger necessary whole. You are needed.
Want better? Vote better.
Your elected officials will give more attention to your requests if they know you’re responsible for their victory. Is this guaranteed? Of course not. But you have better chances of getting the results you want if you vote for the officials who share your views. On the other hand, if you don’t vote, you have effectively surrendered your moral and political position to others who may or may not espouse your views and values. Show up.
You have more than two choices…
If you squirm at the thought of either of the two leading candidates serving as President, remember you HAVE OTHER CHOICES. Even if your third party does not win, it is one less vote for the opposing candidates. Albeit less popular, selecting a third party is a completely viable option.
Many found it necessary to fight for this right…and some are still fighting.
Countless activists have given their lives to this cause. They understood the value of a democracy - that a government run “by the people, for the people,” is only possible IF the people participate. And, while many Americans take for granted this cherished right, there are many residing in developing countries without the right. They have no choice. Their governments tell them what to do and they are without option. Meanwhile we sit back and let our votes go uncounted, our voices go unheard.
Although written for the cause of racial equality, it is worthy to mention the following…
But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. - Abraham Lincoln, The Gettysburg Address
In the end, why should you vote?
You have a choice in who runs your country.
You have the right to do so.
You have a duty to follow through.
Go out and vote. You have the power to change the course of history.