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Why I Vote

This blog post is not about my political leanings (left, if you don't already know) or about whom I will vote for this election. It's about why I vote in the first place.

It's not just because of Civics class in high school, although I'm sure that has something to do with it. My teacher was one of those charismatic, inspirational sorts, and the idea that we had an obligation to do our part as citizens and exercise our franchise was definitely passed along.

It's not just because of the Women's History class I took in college, either - a seminar involving something like four students and a male professor (who was a big fat feminist, because guys can be feminists, too, you know). We learned all about the ladies of Seneca Falls - the suffragettes and the society women who worked hard for change, from promoting breast-feeding to dispensing with disforming corsets to standing up for the rights of female workers and the right of all women to be treated as citizens, not property.

It's not just because I grew up in a mixed marriage - one Democrat, one Republican, with some different viewpoints and many the same. But it was a marriage where it was clear that both parties had a stake in supporting the family (financially as well as otherwise), and one where it was a given that they were going to vote in primaries, national elections, school board elections, etc.

I vote because at heart, I still believe in the system. I believe that citizens of the United States can exercise the franchise and make a difference in their lives and the lives of their fellow citizens. I have my own ideas what sorts of differences I want to see, and they tend to be more New Deal/Progressive, more "we're all in this together" than "let's clear the path so it's each man for himself", but the point is, I vote because I know it can make a difference.

And I vote because, in part, I feel that if I didn't vote, I'd have no right to complain if I end up unhappy with the election's results.

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( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 3rd, 2012 02:33 pm (UTC)
I'm right (or should I say left?) with you on all of this, Kelly.
Nov. 4th, 2012 11:54 pm (UTC)
I figured as much, Terri - no wonder we hit it off so well!
Nov. 4th, 2012 01:50 pm (UTC)
Voting is the ultimate way of voicing a complaint!
Nov. 4th, 2012 11:55 pm (UTC)
Indeed it is!
Nov. 4th, 2012 11:52 pm (UTC)
Excellent thoughts. Voting is such a hopeful and optimistic act.

Joy's Book Blog (http://www.joyweesemoll.com/)
Nov. 4th, 2012 11:55 pm (UTC)
It truly is.
Nov. 6th, 2012 08:01 pm (UTC)
Although I am wearing a corset, I appreciated your optimistic reflection on our responsibilities in this democratic process.
Nov. 21st, 2012 03:01 am (UTC)
I assume that you mean a corset because you've hurt your back, and not some sort of sympathetic action in support of suffrage. I hope you're feeling better!
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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