Good Neighbors Vote

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Editor’s Note: This is a version of a post I did in October. California residents, if you still need information on voting, go to the Secretary of State website information page. 

I spend a lot of time at Good Neighbor Stories working to inspire people to be better neighbors, not just in the literal sense of proximity on our own blocks, but in the global sense of how our actions ripple out through our communities and the rest of the world. What we do—or don’t do—has very real impact, even if we don’t perceive it. And while I haven’t said it explicitly, I do imply in my writings that being a good neighbor equals being a good citizen.

In this age of  up to half or more of the eligible voters not exercising the right to vote, this may seem like a bold, or even naive, claim: good neighbors/citizens vote. It is a right, but it’s also a responsibility. And with that responsibility comes some preparation so that the vote you make is an informed one.

Here are several basic reminders of why it’s important to vote:

  • A democracy works best when everyone participates. We are electing people to represent us at all levels of government; those representatives will make very real decisions which will impact our everyday lives. If we don’t participate, at best we are taking the risk that those who do not represent our views or needs will be elected; at worst we are opening the door to those who want to manipulate or dominate the process to the benefit of the few.
  • Your right to vote was hard won. As a nation we’ve fought hard for a representative government and the right to vote; our troops throughout history have fought and died to protect that right. In addition, there are forefathers and foremothers who fought for women and minorities to be able to vote, a fact that should not be taken for granted.
  • Your vote does matter. My family would attest to me being a bit of a broken record whenever I hear someone say, “My vote [Read more…]