Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Vote as though your world depended on it...cause it does

When I went in to vote, there was no one else voting. No one. And we are a district that usually surpasses the others in voting attendance. The Republicans were trounced in Charlotte. I read that it was because of voter apathy, low turnout.

"Why are you wearing your I Voted sticker?" asked Asherel.
"To encourage others to vote," I said.
I was too weary to launch into my duty as a citizen speech. She has it memorized, anyway. Doesn't our country understand what a privilege voting is? Do they want to have a leader like Gaddafi? Can't we all get off our lazy butts once a year to go pull a few levers that will decide what kind of a government we will have? If you didn't vote, shame on you. The only thing worse than not voting is voting ignorantly. If we are going to vote, we better have some idea of why and who we are voting for. Some people don't like straight ticket voting, but I think that is way better than voting because you saw a yard sign and that person had a nice smile. Hitler had a nice smile. With straight party voting, you are voting for a philosophy of what you believe government should be. If you can't or won't be informed on each and every politician, at least be informed on the differences between the major parties.

So when the school board candidates side-by-side summaries came out, I read them all. There were 13 candidates. I circled the names of those whose views I agreed with. I wasn't thrilled with most of them, but I did like two of them. I got to vote for three. So when I went to the polls, I selected my two, and then was in a quandary. I hate to waste a vote, but how could I vote for candidates I didn't like or didn't feel I could accurately assess? Then I knew what I should do. I voted for my husband. Chuckling a little, I put his name in the write-in slot. Now this was not a protest vote. I think Arvo would be a very good school board member. He has strong opinions based on very sound convictions that are well thought out and meticulously researched. He doesn't have a politician's temperament...I am not sure diplomacy is his strong suit, but he was better in my mind than my other choices. I had a hard time not laughing, and since I was the only voter in the large echoing gym, the poll workers kept looking nervously at me. I don't think they could recall any humor on the dry and short ballot this year.

When I got home, I knocked on the office in our house where Arvo works.
"I just voted for you for school board," I told him, "Just thought you ought to know in case you win."
Then I went to my facebook page. I wrote to all my friends that my husband already had one vote for school board.
"Drat, I wish I'd known!" said one friend, "I just voted!"
"Go vote again!" I urged, "Use your neighbor's name. It is very low turnout...they probably didn't vote."
"Vote early, vote often!" she said.
"It's the American way!" I added laughing.
A few more friends chimed in-  Arvo 2012! Go Arvo! and the like. I think I was developing a groundswell of support. If only we had campaigned a day earlier.

Alas, he didn't win. I opened the paper to somber news. I don't think any of my candidates won. I am definitely not going to gamble in Vegas this week.....

Later in the day I got a phone call.
"Vicky? This is Frank at the bookstore. I sold out of your books. Can you bring me ten more? This book is selling really well. A customer came in and just asked for a few copies. Said she was told she had to read this book."
Well! The day was not a total loss.

One of my favorite verses is from Joshua, when he is chiding his wishy washy people to make a choice for who will lead them. Either choose those old gods that the pagans worshiped, or choose the one true God, he admonishes them. But don't sit on the fence. Fence sitters get toppled with the first strong breeze.
"But as for me and my household," he proclaims, "We will serve the Lord."
We get the future we choose, I thought. It applies to elections and it applies to eternity.

Joshua 24:14-16

 14 “Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. 15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”

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