VOTE in Book Five: Working Through the Maze 2018

  • Nov. 5, 2018, 10:55 a.m.
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Americans, tomorrow is an election day. Uber and Lyft have both agreed to Free Fares for Voting. Many states are required, by law, to provide you “time off from work” to vote. Voting is the NON Violent Revolution way that “Civilized Societies” have decided upon to exchange power.

And trust me… IF YOU DON’T LIKE WHAT THE POWERFUL ARE DOING RIGHT NOW, YOU MUST VOTE. If you DO like what the powerful are doing, it doesn’t matter as much… but even still, I’d say to you that you should go vote.

Is the system fair? No. Have the GOP gerrymandered there way into bullshit positions? Yes. But if I believed any of that was enough to destroy the idea of voting, I would have gone out of my way to prevent my friend Peter from running for office. Statistically, due to gerrymandering, he doesn’t stand a chance. BUT AT NO POINT HAS THAT EVER STOPPED HIM, SLOWED HIM, OR CAUSED HIM TO CHANGE COURSE. He and his wife have been going door to door, business to business, to meet people and get to know them. The incumbent he’s challenging? HASN’T HELD A TOWNHALL, REFUSED TO DEBATE, AND REFUSES TO MEET WITH CONSTITUENTS. Why?? Because he’s certain that he gerrymandered himself a victory.

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Peter’s opponent is counting on an aging constituency that doesn’t care that their representative doesn’t engage them… they’ll vote incumbent because they always do. Peter needs people TO VOTE because shouldn’t a community give a damn that their representative engages them? Shouldn’t we tell our Public Servants “Serve the Public or Piss Off”? Why do we stay home, opt not to vote, and then say “The government doesn’t listen to us.”? Trust me.. you must stand up to demand that your voice be heard. Voting is one way of doing it. Perhaps the most important way of doing it.

From ” ” by David Wong

Being a progressive is kind of like being a nerd in high school – your identity is built around being a powerless outcast, and thus gaining power or popularity feels like a betrayal. Believing in an inherently unfair system is great if it motivates you to help make it more fair, but every so often, it just means we have a ready-made excuse for when we fail to achieve that goal.

If Trump’s party holds onto one or both houses of Congress on Tuesday, it will be due to a whole bunch of narrow races going their way. If so, there will be many articles on left-wing blogs about how voter suppression won the GOP the election because of new voter ID laws and registration purges turning away thousands of votes. This will completely ignore the fact that 70-plus percent of us who weren’t suppressed just chose to stay home, and the fact that a strong enough turnout would have crushed those suppression efforts like a horse stepping on a single human testicle.

We’ll talk about gerrymandering, corporate campaign donations, the undemocratic Senate in which a vote in Wyoming carries as much power as 80 votes in California. Never mind bitter political battles that have been won by “victims” over the decades, who each faced unfair/rigged systems and fucking won anyway. We can’t acknowledge that we can in fact overcome the unfairness if we push hard enough, because that means if we fail to do it, that it’s our fault. And nothing can ever be our fault, because victim-blaming is wrong and also we’re always the victims.

And worst of all, the next day, as the disappointing results roll in, all of the too-cool-to-care rebels will act like this is proof they were right. “See? This is why I didn’t bother to vote. We never win anyway.”

It’s kind of amazing, the way the lazy part of your brain is also a master of disguise, dressing up passive inaction as badass rebellion. “If you think about it, refusing to participate is the most courageous stance of all! And who cares if we’re one senator away from women having to get coat hanger abortions again? My Senate candidate doesn’t support free college, so I’m staying home!”

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