I’ve been of the age to vote for some time now, but I have not always exercised that right. I was in my mid to late twenties when a political discussion came up at work. I was not engaged in the discussion, but was listening intently, when one man, younger than me, asked the parties involved if they voted in the last election. At least one said no. He looked him straight in the eye and told the non-voter that he didn’t have the right to complain if he wasn’t going to vote to change what was going on.
I don’t agree with that opinion myself. Part of being an American is being free to vote or not. And also being free to complain about your government regardless if you voted for them of not. But his statement got me to thinking. I had not voted up until that point. I didn’t see how my one vote could possibly make a difference. I did vote in the next election and I’ve tried to make sure that I’ve cast an educated ballot in each election and primary since. I’ve missed one or two, I think due to illness and unforeseen circumstances. So, I now try to vote early on occasion, just to be on the safe side.
Nothing feels as good as voting on election day though. Especially not in a rural area. In that first election that I voted in, I lived in a big city and voted at the local elementary school. Not knowing what the heck I was doing, I attempted to hand my completed ballot to the man standing at the door. You would have thought I had just offered to have sex with him in front of his Sunday school class, he raised such a ruckus! It was one of the more embarrassing moments in my life actually. Here in my rural area I vote at the local community center, and I’m almost positive they took my ballot from me the first time or two I voted and placed it in the box for me. It was in front of my very eyes, so I know that everything was above board and honest. Just another example of country living being more simple.
I hope that all Texans exercised today. At least the right to vote. So many have give up so much for each of us to have the right to do it.