Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Why I Didn't Vote Today

Amanda and I have voted in probably 9 out of 10 elections. Usually, we sit down with the mailed out information booklets, read through all of the proposition and candidates, and decide what/who we want to vote for. Most of the time our decisions are identical, but not always.

Leading up to this year's primary elections though, we have been up to our ears getting ready for Vacation Bible School (VBS) at our church. Amanda is in charge of the drama portion of it, and besides helping her as much as possible in the preparation, I have also volunteered to be the actor/character for 2 of the 5 nights.

Because of VBS, I am going to bed later (11:30+), and therefore getting up later, which leads to me getting to work later. Then on top of that I have to leave work early so I can be home by 4:30pm. So my work hours are going to be significantly short this week. Not only that, but we haven't had time to read through the informative material that we received in the mail.

Ok, now that the whine-fest is over, my co-worker pointed out that I can just swing by the voting station on the way home from work. While this is true, there is still one more reason why I refuse to just stop in and check those decision boxes.

I am completely opposed to people voting when uninformed. I don't care if you're a communist liberal or a nazi conservative, as long as you know what the hell you're voting for when you check those boxes, then more power to you. But it is my belief that many (most?) people go to the polls and just go straight down along party lines. Or at best they may carry a suggestion card with them from some organization and just follow their guidelines to the tee.

Admittedly, in the past I have been one of them. In 1993, at the age of 22 (yes, I am getting old), I voted for Bill Clinton because I thought he seemed cool. That's right, for no other reason but that.

In my opinion, there should be a screening process of some sort (a mail-in questionnaire?) which demonstrates that each person has an actual reason why they are making their voting decisions. And only then would they be allowed to make their choices count.

All of that to say that I didn't vote today because a) lack of time, and b) to do so would be in violation of my own principal of informed voting.

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