Thursday, June 08, 2006
Voting is Good
I voted on Tuesday. I love to vote. I guess I’m somewhat political – but more so I think I am “civic”. And more importantly I believe active participation in this process is what we should do as Americans.
I’m not going to say if you don’t vote you can’t bitch about it. That’s a simple platitude – and I don’t believe in those.
A good part of the voting process I enjoy is the neighborhood pastoral part of it. In both the Houston Heights and here in San Pedro, CA I live close by to polling places that are old high schools with auditoriums and/or foyers that are majestic in nature and bring back great memories of the schools in New York and Jersey that I attended as a kid. It is almost that as I vote – I step back in time, and a good time.
I enjoy the part that everyone knows where to go to cast their ballot and the line of friendly neighborhood people who help you in the process. And I even like the little “I voted” sticker they give you. This process of “assembling and acting” brings a sense of community that is so precious to our nation, our state, our county – our neighborhood. Little pink houses.
Voting, however, is just like anything else we may or may not do – if you do it regularly then you get in practice to do it. That makes you pay attention to what is going on – and realize that your vote IS important. It is a discipline you must master. And it can make a difference. And it is just not the national debate that, frankly, has been taken wildly out of control by the 24-hour news organizations that must find something to fill the airwaves. It is the local issues as well – and those are ones we all can make a more significant individual impact upon. Take this week in LA (please go here for a real rant).
Please realize that in this post I am trying to stay away from party or ideology leanings. The reality is that we all must participate in a healthy dialogue in discussing important issues that concern all of us as Americans – or even others. I hate it when such discussions devolve into simple one-liners, or dropping of company or politician names for some type of emphasis, such that it sounds like any elementary school playground argument. We must rise above that in order to continue to craft, monitor and employ the most free government on the globe.
And, as a start, we must vote.