Maxim Monday: Vote

I didn’t double-check, but I’m pretty sure this isn’t a Delphic Maxim. Democracy comes from the Greeks, even if only the non-slave males were given the opportunity to vote. The Unites States doesn’t have a direct democracy, which really only functions best among thousands of people. But we do have democracy, and I’m a fan of it. I don’t use this blog for my political thoughts (although you can be certain I have many). Doing our civic duty is an ancient pagan value and so I’m using today’s post to encourage you to vote.

There are those in the US who would prefer if only land-holding, business-owning, morally upright, white folk could vote. Every time a person of color, a woman, someone in the LGBTQ community, a member of a religious minority votes, I consider that a radical act. Sure, many people among those groups are not radical, and plenty of people vote for the very forces that would oppress them. Still: exercise your constitutional right to vote.

The presidential election is a circus. I don’t consider the differences between Obama and Romney to be all that significant. If you don’t want to vote for either of those, may I suggest that you look to third parties for inspiration? The Green and Libertarian parties have worthy candidates, and I support the growth of third (and fourth and fifth) parties, in order to move away from the bipartisan domination of discourse in the US.

It’s not just the presidential election that matters, either. If you feel your vote doesn’t count at a national level (and there’s a strong argument for that), it most certainly does at the state and local levels. Vote for your representatives; see what’s pressing for your city or county.

I won’t suggest economic policy or national strategy to you, but I’d like to put in a plug for a couple of things, namely love and civil liberties. My hope is that every vote cast tomorrow is a vote for love, for the rights of families of all stripes, and for the protection of my freedoms as a female. I urge you to seek out candidates that will represent ALL of their citizenry: be they gay or straight, male or female, rich or poor, Buddhist, Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Hindu, Pagan, ‘Other,’ or atheist – and everything in between. It’s much harder to work for the benefit of all, but it’s the only way forward.

Go forth and vote! Vote for love!