Tuesday, November 07, 2006

One of my favorite days

Today is one of my favorite days, Election day, the 'right to gripe' day, the best way to be heard day.

We, as individuals, have largely lost the ability to control much in our day to day life.

It tickles me when I get the emails about taking charge of controlling gas prices. If we band together and buy gas only on certain days, or from certain companies, we can send a message to the oil/gas producers and effect a change. That is purely idealist BS. If you thought that worked, I am sorry to have to be the one to pop your bubble. If every citizen bought a bike and we stopped using gasoline, we might make a dent, but the Gov't and big business is still going to buy gas and ship products. We sent a message to the gas companies a long time ago. We told them, by our buying habits, that we will pay whatever they charge and drive where ever we go. So, we really don't have a voice in gas prices as a whole. We can affect how they affect us. We can change our driving habits and lower our usage and affect our own pockets.

We grumble about prices and then write the check. We are sending a clear and concise message to the industries of corporate America.

However, today I get to make a difference. I get to cast the one thing I have, that no-one can do for me. No illegal immigrant can take this task away from me. No governmental body can stop me. No police will prohibit me. Today, I get to cast my vote, my voice, into the sea of millions and it carries the same weight as each other voice. Is that great, or what ?

I was told, this morning, that I could not vote. I moved and didn't change my registration in time. I have registered to vote in Montgomery County, but I am not on their register. BUT, I found a way. I can't go to Lexington to vote, I don't live there anymore. I can cast a provisional ballot. The provisional ballot was introduced nationwide in 2004. Provisional ballots are to prevent wrongful disenfranchisement. So, I will be going back to the polling place to cast my provisional ballot this afternoon.

Yeah !

In August 1974, I was 16 and a senior in high school. I took a class called Current Events as part of my History credits. Our textbook was Newsweek Magazine. I studied the Vietnam war. I studied the Nixon Presidency. I got hooked on the news and hooked on being a part of our nation. My part is my vote. I am hooked on voting.

It was November of 1975 before I could vote. In KY, 784,157 votes were cast in the gubenatorial race. Of those 784,157 votes, 3318 votes were cast in Woodford County. The votes were 470, 159 for Julian Carroll and 277,998 for 'Bob' Gable. In Woodford County, the votes were 2262 for Carroll and 1056 for Gable. I was one of those 3318 votes.

I remember the polling place. I remember the railroad tracks just beside the little building used. It was a magic time.

It still is.

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