Our society is based on the concept of self governance. The idea that the people in the society make the laws for society collectively. So we act based on an agreed upon consensus of self rule. A consensus formed by input from each person in our group. We currently define this group as adults, aged eighteen years old; or older. Since there are many people our country, it is not practical to seek each person’s opinion on each decision; as they are made. Nor is there enough time to do so.
Therefore our government is representative; and we must choose a few people to act on the behalf of the whole group. We have selected a process to pick our representatives. It is sometimes referred to as ‘one man, one vote’. In theory, it gives every adult an opportunity to express their choices; through their chosen proxy. Thus voting gives each adult in the community an equal chance to express their wishes. Which leads to shared goals and multiplies our odds for reaching them.
Yet we know, as a practical matter, that a large percentage of us do not vote. When we don’t vote, we lose our ability to influence decisions made on our behalf. Or decisions made in our name. Moreover, we don’t share our insight into choosing our societies decision makers. So our wants, needs, thoughts, and insights may not be reflected in the communities plans or deeds. When that happens we will likely feel disenfranchised. As well as disadvantaged.
However, there are several reasons why some of us don’t vote. Reasons like apathy. If we believe voting won’t make any difference, then it is a waste of our time. If we are happy with, or indifferent to, the way things are; then we don’t need to vote. Or when we decide that voting validates a system we don’t believe in; then we dare not vote. But there are reasons beyond not caring.
Some of us do not vote because we don’t understand why we should. The mechanisms of civil law, and the tax code have complexities most people do not understand. How our vote affects these and other societal systems is often unclear. We may feel that our vote has no impact on our communities’ direction or achievements. Yet when we fail to share our input in this way it is a disadvantage for everyone.
For we are asked to vote on many things. Such as who will run things. Or who will set our priorities. How many people will run things. Which things will they have control over. How long will they have the authority to run things. Who will monitor their behavior to make sure they perform with fidelity. How will we pay to have these and other duties performed. What other duties should be done. How much of that cost will come from each of us.
The decisions society makes affect our lives; which, in turn affects how we behave. So we need to let others in the community know our position on these issues. For we face crises that threaten our collective survival. Now, more than ever, we need to cast and count every vote. To assist this cause, we offer a link to information which we believe will assist U.S. voters. The link is BetterKnowABallot.com. We have used it to learn about voting in Ohio, this fall. We recommend it to other U.S. citizens; in Ohio and other states.
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J. A. Stubbs, Editor-In-Chief
Forgotten Lore Publishing, llc