A Word More About Voting

THE IDES OF OCTOBER 2020

Aloha;

In the previous post we referenced reasons why some citizens who are eligible to vote, nevertheless do not.  Whether we don’t value the process or just don’t understand it.  Thus whether by design or disinterest, when we don’t vote; we don’t add our voice to help express the will of our society.  In this country we are not required to vote if we don’t want to.  But as eligible voters we are free to make that choice.  Even though as citizens we have a societal responsibility to participate in our representative government.

Still it’s up to each of us to decide how we want to express our voice. Either by the way we vote or the fact that we don’t.  This is our right; as long as we are able to make the choice freely.  However, some of us are not content to stop there.  We want to control events in the world around us  so strongly, that we want only our voice heard.  Then we are motivated to amplify the power of our vote by suppressing the vote of others.  In an attempt to steer the society and it’s resources to our personal benefit.  So that society work to reach our goals instead of an agenda which benefits the community, at large.

When we follow that path, we create obstacles to free and fair elections.  We look for methods to select like-minded people and give them easy access to the electoral process.  At the same time we contrive  and construct means to bar people whose choices and voices differ from our own.  We do this by creating hurdles in the registration process.  Such as literacy tests.  Or fees to register.  Or by limiting days and places where registration can take place.  We challenge a voter’s signature, identification, or residency.  Or limit the number of polling places; in areas where we don’t want votes counted.  Even fail to print enough ballots in those same areas.

Of course we have other tactics to suppress citizens ability and opportunity to vote.  We provide misinformation about the electoral process to the people we don’t want to vote.  Or slander people we don’t want to receive votes.  Steal ballots or destroy them  We will even intimidate, or outright threaten, groups of the electorate.  In an effort to scare away unwanted voters.  Each vote we suppress improves our chances for imposing our goals and will on society.  If we can effectively negate enough opposing voices, then they will never be heard.  So their needs will receive no consideration, and will go unaddressed.

When we pursue these courses of action, we fail to acknowledge the rights; and the humanity of our fellow citizen’s.  This is short-sighted because all people are equal in their desire for justice.  And when people can not get justice or receive consideration, their survival is at risk.  We understand that all life fights to survive.  So it is no surprise when people rebel against attacks on their perceived well-being.  Further it is unrealistic to expect anyone to accept this suppression willingly.  So when some of us deny others of us our civil right to vote; conflict will follow.

This leads to citizens in conflict with each other; and that strife undercuts our society’s effectiveness.  Because we use time, resources, and energy to fight among ourselves; rather than to improve our collective condition.  So groups of people, and the community at large suffer, while much of our capability is wasted.  Which weakens society and makes our country more vulnerable to outside aggression.  For when we try to manipulate members of our society to get what we want; we create more general distrust in our communities.  It also creates opportunities for forces outside our country to manipulate us.

If we want a society that honors, and lives up to its stated ideals; we must temper our desire to control every factor of our lives.  Plus realize and accept that one person’s desire for this control is as strong as the need of others to do the same.  Thus our best chance to balance these drives in a society is to give each citizen a level opportunity to voice their wishes.  Then we may find a compromise, or course of action which benefits the most people.  And causes the fewest negative outcomes for the rest of us.

One straightforward way to do that is by voting.  By letting your voice be heard and your choice be known.  To aid this objective, we repeat the advice we gave in our last post.  If you want more information on how to vote in the November 3rd election of 2020; and you are a U.S. citizen, we suggest the link BetterKnowABallot.com.  We have used it and believe this site will provide valuable information on voting in each state.  Because our vote is a right of citizenship.  It is also a responsibility of citizenship.  As we each have a voice, a point of view to share; and a chance to express it.  Please don’t miss the opportunity.  Learn how and where to vote.  Then do so as early as you can.

You can find more posts in our Reading Library.

Respectfully Yours,

J. A. Stubbs, Editor-In-Chief

Forgotten Lore Publishing, llc.

A Word About Voting

Aloha;

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.

You will find more posts in our Reading Library.

Respectfully Yours,

J. A. Stubbs, Editor-In-Chief

Forgotten Lore Publishing, llc