I can’t vote today (for many reasons I’ve cited here before) but I’m asking you to.
As it was written in the Economist several days ago, "it is impossible to forecast how important any presidency will be" nor can we predict how good of a president any politician will be. In fact history has shown us that some of our finest presidents were mere novices in the political arena, or so we thought, while some of our worst presidents were seasoned professionals. So In effect, no matter who we vote for today, we are all taking a gamble.
Recognizing that there is not much we can do about that aspect of elections, I urge you not to think of this election, or any other election, in that prism. Instead, I propose that we think of this election, and all elections, as a responsibility and an opportunity.
It is our responsibility to hold elected officials accountable, to hold the torch that was passed onto us by previous generations dating back to our fore-fathers, to tell the world that democracy is alive and well and is indeed the best form of government.
This election is also an opportunity. For some, it is the opportunity to correct the mistake from 4 or 8 year ago. For others, it is the opportunity to re-affirm their beliefs from the same period. For many, it is the opportunity to participate in the democratic process for the first time. But for all, it is an opportunity to be heard; an opportunity to take this country in a different direction; an opportunity to make history regardless of ideology or background.
So today, I am asking you to vote.
I am asking you to vote for me and many others like me who won’t have the opportunity to be heard.
I am asking you to vote for our men and women in the armed forces serving abroad that won’t be able to vote because of archaic absentee ballot laws.
I am asking you to vote so that we can put people in office with the moral courage to deal with challenges facing our nation today at the national and local level.
I am asking you to vote so our generation may be heard.
Most of all I am asking you to vote because your vote, your voice, matters.
Some will dismiss my call to action as a gimmick to get people to vote for Senator Obama. It is true that I support Senator Obama. I do so for many reasons that others have penned more eloquently than I ever will. And it is indeed my fervent hope that you do cast your ballot for the junior senator from Illinois. However, this is not to say that Senator McCain will not make a good president. In fact, I believe that he will be an adequate president or even a fine president. Very few of us have served this country like he has over the decades. Though I question his vice-presidential pick, I believe that he will take that same dedication and love for our country to the white house. I did not write this to endorse any candidate running on any level, but simply to ask you to vote.
So I will ask again, please go vote.
The late Robert Francis Kennedy reminded us that "few will have the greatness to bend history itself, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total of all those acts will be written the history of this generation." Today, your small portion is to go vote.
[picture by joecrimmings]