by Judy Rice
Clash Daily Contributor
I hear the same song and dance over and over again when I ask people who they like in the upcoming mid-term elections on November 4. It is simply astonishing how many seemingly intelligent people give me the answer, “I don’t vote” or “I only vote in the presidential elections.” It seems like too many Americans simply forgot history and/or what they learned in the American Government class they were required to take in high school. I hear many say that voting doesn’t matter anyway. When did voting become irrelevant or unnecessary in a republic?
I believe way too many American citizens have grown so complacent and comfortable here in America that we truly forgot what a great privilege it is to vote. I remember the “good ol’ days” when I was younger and conversations about politics and religion weren’t so taboo. I would hear family discussions about who was running in the elections. Sometimes those discussions would get pretty heated and my grandpa might add some Polish slang to my vocabulary! Elections were more like events that everyone in the community knew about and participated in.
Not anymore. Don’t discuss politics and religion. Somebody might just get offended. Now it is like a mortal sin to say you don’t like someone’s views. I vote for getting over this, getting the intelligent conversations started again and get to the voting booth on November 4th.
Allow me to present my simple response to the question, “Why should you vote?” First of all, go to your favorite search engine and type “what elections were decided by few votes.” You will quickly see that there are indeed some that were decided by very small margins. Voting does indeed make a difference. Go ahead and search it. Nobody is watching you be political.
Now ask yourself this simple question: If voting doesn’t matter, why does President Obama seem to have campaigning and fundraising on the top of his “to do” list these days despite everything else that is going on? Our country is being attacked by terrorists that we can’t call “terrorists” and a deadly disease that can be contained if we simply put the COMMON back in the SENSE! The President campaigns because HE KNOWS voting matters. Why can’t we see the obvious?
I often hear Rush Limbaugh talk about the low information voter, but what is more disturbing to me is the low information Christian. It seems to me that there is no shame anymore in not voting or not being informed enough to vote intelligently. I have heard people proudly say they don’t vote and as if not voting was the smarter thing to do. When I hear Christians saying this, I simply want to scream. There are candidates on the ballots that are pro-choice and others that are for homosexual marriage and too many times these issues are left unchallenged by the very population that should be the loudest. Elections are the time to get your voice heard.
Believing the lie that voting doesn’t matter means we are just giving up! Our forefathers, deceased relatives and friends, would be turning over in their graves over the few numbers of citizens that still faithfully exercise the privileges that so many shed blood for, and we simply take for granted. If you still aren’t sure if voting matters, can’t you at least agree that setting a great example for future generations is an intelligent move just in case it matters?
Judy Rice is the proud mother of teenage triplets, Jillian, Spencer and Derek and wife to Gary, one of the most loving, hardworking, honorable men in the world. She is a Christian who is a huge fan of traditional marriage, freedom, and is pro- life to the core. She has a Masters in Counseling from DePaul University in Chicago and a Bachelors degree in Communications from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Before kids, she worked as a counselor, advisor and teacher at the university level. She clarified her world view in her thirties and believes her most valuable education continues to come from reading the Bible, reading in general, listening, paying attention and participating in meaningful communication wherever it occurs.