Fearing the Floodgates – Part 2

Here is the second part of my political rant.  Click here for the beginning of this blog, which posted last week.

To continue with my last point, I definitely have opinions on past elections, regardless of having voted or not.  I feel that Ross Perot would’ve been a GREAT President!  I think he didn’t win because 1) he gave us the cold hard truth about our country, which I applaud him for, but the majority didn’t want to hear; and 2) he chose a VP who wasn’t a very good orator.  I think Bush Jr was a HORRIBLE blow to this country in terms of international relations, outright lying to the American people, and yes, I believe he was largely responsible for the atrocity that happened on September 11, 2001.

I feel that Obama was the best choice four years ago, and I feel he’s the best choice in our current election.  He may not have been able to pull off all the things he hoped to in his first term, but much of that was due to the brick walls he kept meeting by those whose main goal was to make him a “one term President.”  Despite such opposition, I think he’s done some wonderful things for our country, and I hope he’s able to continue for another term.

Which is why I actually contemplated voting this year, so badly did I want Obama to stay in the Oval Office.  There’s been a serious war inside me over this.  I REALLY wanted Obama in for the next four years, and I truly feared for our country if  Romney got elected!  But I also REALLY don’t think my vote matters when it’s “counted” in the EC way.  Nor do I like the over-saturation of ads, slams, slings and arrows that both sides have flung at each other for the last year.  Neither side took the high road, and in many cases they were both so misleading or took whatever was said by the other out of context.  So I’ve had to hunt down the facts for what was actually said/written for the last several months.

I’ve spent more energy on politics this year than I ever had before.  Which makes me worry that I’ll spend just as much time and energy (or more) in every future election.  I fear that voting this year would open the floodgates of political information into my life, which I really don’t want, and I’ll have to do twice as much research on every issue, every debate, every sound bite, in order to make sure I’ve got the correct facts.  And yes, that’s probably what should be happening with people who vote; we should be paying very close attention to what’s being proposed to us . . . but who’s got that kind of time on their hands?

There’s a wonderful clip from the movie Protocol with Goldie Hawn that talks about this very thing.  I LOVE this clip, and I agree with the sentiment, that We the People should be watching our government like hawks, and getting up in arms when we’re unhappy with how they run things.  But, I just don’t know if I can afford to expend all my energy that way from now on, or if I even want to.

After deliberating long and hard about this, I had actually decided NOT to register/vote this year just a week before the registration deadline.  But then I found myself hounding Craig to get his absentee vote in before we left for our honeymoon, and realized I was doing that because I wanted ONE of our voices to be heard.  I finally decided that I had to put my own two cents into the ring, regardless of whether or not it would count.  It wasn’t fair of me to make Craig be the voice for both of us.

So I actually voted this year.  I registered and filled out my absentee ballot for the first time ever.  Since I don’t know any of the local candidates, or much info on the propositions, I was up until midnight looking into it. The good thing to take away from this is I now have an understanding of what people go through when they vote.  The down side is there’s no way to know if I made the right choices.

I can’t guarantee I’ll ever vote again, but who knows?  Until this year, it had never crossed my mind, and I would never have written such a long blog on politics.  I could’ve gone on even longer, believe me.  But I’m exhausted, as I’m sure you are, dear readers, of this whole process.

I thank you for reading, and I welcome your comments.  But know that I might not respond to them, other than to say “Thanks,” simply because I’ve said my piece.

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12 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. kaye george
    Nov 09, 2012 @ 07:03:56

    You did the right thing by voting. PLEASE consider doing it in all the elections. It’s a right that people have died for.

    Reply

  2. Dana Fredsti
    Nov 09, 2012 @ 10:27:45

    I agree with Kaye and I’m so proud of you for coming to the decision that you did re: pestering Craig/voting yourself as well. Remember, there are more things at stake than just the presidential election and I do believe our votes count on these other issues.

    Reply

  3. Terry Shames
    Nov 09, 2012 @ 10:45:59

    Alyx, I love to vote. I’ve never missed a voting day. I think it’s so important and I want to persuade you that it is. if nothing else remember how many women in our own country in the past and how many people in other countries all over the world even now fight and die for the right to vote. I know you aren’t taking your decision lightly, but consider that both sides were gearing for being upset if the electoral college and popular vote supported different candidates. The fact that they were the same was huge. And California votes counted for a lot in that equation.

    In Florida, friends who worked tirelessly to re-elect President Obama were so discouraged that they might not bring Florida into the Obama camp. I pointed out to them that even if Florida didn’t go for Obama, their efforts engaged enough people so that Republicans had to expend time and money in Florida that they could have used elsewhere. In the end, Florida did come into the fold–and every single vote counted.

    Reply

  4. Alyx Morgan
    Nov 09, 2012 @ 11:55:56

    I just wanted to do one reply to all regarding to the multiple comments made about the right to vote being so hard-fought & hard-won . . .

    Yes, it was a very hard fight & struggle for that kind of equality (not just for women, but black people as well), & I’m very glad that they did. I know it was no small thing, but they fought for the “right” to vote, not the obligation to do so.

    I’m not saying that I won’t vote again–I honestly have no idea how I’ll feel about it next time–but that’s something I’ll figure out when the time comes.

    Reply

  5. Gayle Feyrer
    Nov 09, 2012 @ 13:46:35

    You might watch Iron Jawed Angels, a great film with Hilary Swank about women fighting for the right to vote.

    Reply

  6. Ken
    Nov 11, 2012 @ 10:55:49

    Activism

    Of course it’s nice you finally voted.
    You can’t complain if you never vote.

    That said:
    Where can you make your vote count?
    Activism.

    One way a writer can sharpen their craft
    (other than sign painting) is to pick a cause
    that is dear to you and find a way to defend/
    advance it.

    Advocacy letters, letters to the editor, any number
    of ways of expressing yourself can sharpen your
    craft and advance a position that means something
    to you.

    Debate in this format is great for a writer.
    You need to formulate a convincing argument
    using rational language, logic, persuasion to
    overcome the other position’s prejudices, held
    believes, misconceptions, and misinformation.

    Propaganda is everywhere.
    Fix it with the truth.
    Get others to vote.

    Go for it.

    Reply

  7. Alyx Morgan
    Nov 11, 2012 @ 14:57:30

    The closest I will probably ever come to Activism is the occasional controversial (or didactic) blog posted here. It’s not my goal to “change” people, only to let my own opinions be known. Doing so here (or through the individual conversations I might have) is enough for me.

    And I certainly am not going to try to tell others that they need to vote . . . not when I still have such a conflict about it going on inside of myself.

    I do thank you for stopping by again today, though, Ken.

    Reply

  8. Trackback: America’s Reality-Show Election | Droppings From the Mind of Alyx

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