Monday, November 01, 2004

Vote or Die

Tomorrow is election day here in the states. Sadly, a turnout of 50% of registered voters is considered a "successful" election. Too many people do not value their right to vote.

I have voted in every election that I could, not just presidential elections. Even when I was overseas, I sent in my absentee ballot. It is too precious a gift to just throw away.

I've actually been involved in politics since I was in my pre-teens. You see, my mother was a local politician (or trying to become one), and insisted that we beome part of the process. I have stuffed envelopes, gone door to door for signatures, and passed out many a flyer in the pursuit of democracy.

I've also worked at the polls, and was even put in charge of maintaining the security of the votes cast. Sadly, I received absolutely no training as to how I was supposed to do this and may have cost the election for some individuals. There were the questions from the other poll workers that I could never answer - such as do we let this person vote; it looks like s/he is registered for the other party, but who could really tell? I always just let them vote, why hold it against the person if s/he voted republican last time. I didn't have the poll open on time, causing individuals to leave before they cast their votes, and when I closed the polls I think that I may have misread or even erased some of the booth tallys.

I say this to bring to light how easy it is to disrupt an election's results, unintentionally or intentionally. Although I truly value our democratic system, I do wonder about its efficiency.

I guess we'll find out tomorrow.

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