Saturday, November 1, 2008

Think. Vote. Please.

Earlier this summer, a picture on the front page of The New York Times stunned me. And it haunts me still. It was of a little boy, a toddler, with both of his ankles in casts. He was from one of the African nations struggling to have fair elections in the midst of war. Men had come in, and when his mother refused to say where his father was and how they had voted, they shattered the little boy's ankles.

Think about that for a minute if you can. Think of the terror and horror his mother endured. The pain of the little boy. These were people who faced brutality and possible death just for trying to vote.

We have an election on the horizon and while there has been lots and lots (and lots!) of words said and written about it, there are people who won't vote because they are too busy or they just plumb forget or they don't care. There are also people who will vote without being informed. They'll vote one way because of hair style or skin color or internet rumors that are e-mailed and forwarded by idiots (sorry, Dad.).

And I want those people to think of that little boy and his mother.

I'm voting for Barack Obama and Joe Biden. There, I said it. For all to see. And with no fear of harm coming to my family or me.

I believe that Obama is our best chance for change and hope and a positive direction for our country. I believe that Obama as president can help America regain her stature and good standing in the world. I like that he's smart. I want a president who's smarter than I am. I firmly believe that he wants the same things for his family and their future that I want for mine. I trust him with my economic future. I agree with him on most social issues. I wish he were more adamant about gun control, but I can't have everything. I support what he proposes for health care.

Do I know every last detail on all his positions? No. But I have listened and read enough to trust him and his vision for America.

For the past few weekends, I've walked through neighborhoods in my town, canvassing for Obama. I've chatted with neighbors who are undecided, who have decided for the other side, and who agree with me (and asked for yard signs). Everyone was friendly (okay, one woman was a bit crotchety) and what struck me was the thoughtfulness of those I talked to. One woman in particular said she was really struggling; she likes Obama, but she's pro-life. She couldn't decide what to do. And while I wished I could sway her, I know she has to decide. But she's thinking about it which is the most important.

I wish I could go door-to-door in more neighborhoods, more states. I wish we could talk to and with rather than at.

This election is too important to hand over to the talking heads on Fox News and MSNBC and CNN.

Think of that mother in Africa and her little boy.

And please vote.


Lisa said...

The importance of this election can't be understated. We're moving into a recession and some worrisome things are happening. Last Sunday, the US launched an attack into Syria and we've launched 16 attacks into Pakistan since August. President Bush is trying to push a bill through now with some of the most aggressive deregulation that's ever been proposed and we've just gone another $840B into the hole with the bailouts.

I have followed this election so closely I'm almost crazy. I've read the candidate's websites, reviewed their legislative records, watched their speeches on YouTube and I've researched every allegation, every claim and every attack. I have been appalled at the level of misrepresentation and outright false information that continues to be cranked out daily by both the media and on the internet and I'm amazed at how many people believe everything they hear without verifying. Much of the false information about Senator Obama is refuted on his website, but after digging deeper into the specifics, I've found the allegations to be even more ridiculous.

I've heard so many people express doubt and fear about Senator Obama because of the misleading things that have been said that I truly believe that they'd choose his plans for the economy, the environment, for developing Energy Technology, for ending the war in Iraq, but the rumors have them scared to death.

If you're one of those people, please, please take the time to dig deeper, use Google and find credible sources of information to help you make up your mind and make your choice based on reality and not internet hysteria.

Heck, if you don't want to take the time to do that and something you've heard is really bothering you, email me and I'll send you source information from credible, non-partisan sources. I don't claim to know everything, and I'm not trying to convert anyone, but if I can dispel false information, I would like the chance to do that.

debra said...

thank you for an eloquent post to to Lisa for her response.
Each vote counts. Think think think. And don't be influenced by the fear mongering so-called experts. Be your own expert. Vote.
This administration sees to have forgotten that the Bill of Rights is not a list of suggestions. And, in my opinion, McCain/Palin would continue to lead this county down that dangerous path with winks, innuendos and allegations.

Daisy said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for canvassing for Obama! My hearing impairment makes it hard for me to do phone bank or canvassing, so I offered to do data entry and literature sorting at the Dems HQ.

Judy Merrill Larsen said...

Lisa, Debra, and Daisy--We're down to the wire . . . hopefully we'll be celebrating Tuesday night!

debra said...

Indeed, Judy. We are probably getting a dozen calls a day right now. I did tell a women from the Ohio GOP that she had the wrong demographics, and that all 3 registered voters in our house are Obama supporters. I asked that she please take us off her call lists.
May we all swing toward celebration!

Melanie Lynne Hauser said...

Absolutely. I've talked with friends from other counties - they are so invested in this, too. We don't realize how much this election will affect the rest of the world, and how very, very interested they are in it. And how very, very puzzled they are by our historically miserable voter turnout.

We take so much for granted in this country of ours. We have such little idea how much other people would like to have the kind of say that's available to us by our vote.

So - VOTE!

(PS - I'm going to be at the Obama rally Tuesday night! Front row seat to history! Woot!)

Carleen Brice said...

Happy Election Day! Come on Missouri, show me!!

Anonymous said...

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