I Don’t Care Who You Vote For! Just Vote!

MY VIEWS | | October 30, 2008 at 5:39 pm

Ok, so I lied, I do care! Obama is my man, but I care more importantly that you use your right to vote. I remember reading over a decade ago a one-liner somewhere that said “Americans will cross oceans to fight for the right to vote, but not the street to cast that vote”. Having the right to vote is a privilege and responsibility all rolled in one. I can see so far that this year history may be made by the huge voter turnout and that pleases me. Nothing is so frustrating than to see votes “wasted” by not voting. People will complain in life about not having the chance to change how government is run, yet they do. By assuming that their one vote won’t make a difference they do the worst thing: NOTHING!

Every vote counts! Even if the candidate you hope for does not win, at least you know you tried. I recall a video clip during a leadership program I once attended about “being the change” depicting two men on a beach. There were many starfish washed ashore and one man kept running and was throwing them back into the sea. The other looked amazed and asked him why he was wasting his time, when there were several that kept washing ashore. He said why bother, when he was making no difference. The other man looked at him and then continued to pick up a starfish and after he threw it in the sea, he looked at the man standing and said “To that one I did.”

The price and power of voting cannot be over emphasized. I grew up in South Africa under the Apartheid regime and I still recall the first South African free and fair elections in 1994. Even with the threat that violence may break out I turned up at the polling booth. I thought I would get there early and though I got there at 4:00am (yes, you read that right, 4 in the morning) the lines were so long I waited for over 5 hours. There was nothing that would make me not vote. I knew of the blood, sweat, and tears that got me that right and and I was certainly going to exercise it. I felt great and I know you will too. Just vote!

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