The majority of the time, it is difficult for me to understand politics. And I’m certainly not a political influencer, I’m just your average Netflix-watching, Spotify-listening mom. OK, maybe I’m a little more than that but I’m just ridiculously average. My main news source? Saturday Night Live and I’m not even kidding.
And I vote. I never used to vote. I was raised with the philosophy if you don’t vote, you don’t have a right to bitch about the newest elected official. And so I vote and earn my right to bitch.
The first year I voted, I was terrified. I was afraid of making a mistake. Or getting murdered.
I didn’t even vote during my high school’s elections because a long time ago on a dark stormy night when I was way way way too young to be babysitting I saw an Alfred Hitchcock-ish, Twilight Zone kind of movie where a seemingly decent guy walked into a booth at voting poll, closed the curtain behind him and as he pulled down the voting handle, he was knifed in the back. Through the curtain. On a dark stormy election night.
And while I was excited to participate, I simply could not bring myself to walking a voting poll and close the curtain behind me
The only reason I actually became brave enough to vote was because I found out that the voting poll for my district did not have any “booths” on the premises, just little “standing desks” and the risk of getting knifed was relatively slim. Turns out, I like voting. And I love the instant gratification of the sticker!
The following Presidental election, it was my responsibility to take my grandparents to vote. I knew who they were voting for because they were quite vocal about their preferences. I also knew for a [very loud] fact that my grandparents and I were both voting straight party, but we did not have matching parties. And since there were two of them and only one of me, they would not only cancel me out they would actually become a power duo and outvote me.
So, I did what anyone would do, I lied. I told them that I had strep throat and was unable to take them to the vote and then I actually went, alone, to vote. And that is how I overthrew the presidential election that year, which I’m sure is somehow illegal.
Anyway, this is the time of year where I start to pay attention to the Presidential race because the herd is thinning. To do that, I open my mind and that is a lot of work. I simply do not have a head for politics but I seek opinions from people that I respect. I ask who they are leaning towards at this point. And then I’ll ask what led them to that decision.
Do you have friends from both parties that follow politics more closely than you do? Ask them to send you links worthy of your time.
I cannot debate political topics with the people I ask. And I certainly cannot debate economical statistics. Nor do I have the knowledge or skillset to convince anyone to change their mind. I’m just trying to make a well-informed decision when I walk up to the “standing desk” in my district twelve months from now.
It is your right to vote, vote smart.