I live in a small town. Small enough that everyone votes in the same place. Small enough that you see at least half a dozen people you know when you vote at 7 a.m.
As I was waiting for the people ahead of me to get their ballots, it struck me that I was truly seeing America. There were farmers, greasy-nailed mechanics, women in business attire. There were moms toting babies in car seats, and dads voting before heading into the office. The polls were manned by retired folk and stay-at-home moms who’d dropped their kids off at school before working the polls.
We were all there to exercise our precious right to vote.
I’m in the middle of reading a book about the American Revolution, so perhaps I’m feeling especially patriotic. The right to vote was literally purchased with the blood of men and women like the ones voting with me this morning: farmers, mothers, business folk. They fought to purchase this right, and we are thankless, thoughtless and ill-advised to squander it.
The people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government and to reform, alter, or totally change the same when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it. – Alexander Hamilton
Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote…that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country. – Samuel Adams
[T]here is a certain supineness which generally overspreads the multitude, and disposes mankind to submit quietly to any form of government, rather than to be at the expense and hazard of resistance. They become attached to ancient modes by habits of obedience, though the reins of authority are sometimes held by the most rigorous hand. Thus we have seen in all ages the many become the slaves of the few; preferring the wretched tranquillity of inglorious ease, they patiently yield to despotic masters, until awakened by multiplied wrongs to the feelings of human nature; which when once aroused to a consciousness of the native freedom and equal rights of man, ever revolts at the idea of servitude. – Mercy Otis Warren
Enjoy your election day.