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Recently, I asked a friend if she was registered to vote.  She looked at me and responded with: “Why vote?”

I was shocked by that response. Why vote? There are too many reasons to list. After all, voting isn’t just a right, it’s a privilege.

Many years ago, I went on a road trip from Kentucky to Chicago to see U2 play at a benefit for Amnesty International.  There were several bands playing that night and some amazing musical moments.  (Bono sang with Sting when the Police reunited!) Still, the moment that resonated with me the most was not a musical performance but something someone said to me at an Amnesty International information booth on the concourse.    I asked why she was volunteering for the organization.  She looked at me with the same shocked look I recently gave my non-voting friend.

“In other countries right now, there are literally people who are dying for the simple right to vote.”

That statement hit me hard. I grew up in the greatest country on the planet. I thought of voting as something common around the world. I knew there were places where voting didn’t exist, but in the simplest way to explain it: I didn’t think about it. Out of sight, out of mind, I guess.

She proceeded to show me pictures and talk about the places where people were imprisoned just for expressing their opinions, let alone discuss the issue of being able to vote.  She named off country after country where a person couldn’t vote freely and she listed person after person who had been imprisoned for expressing themselves.

There I was, a young, privileged American being hit with the cold reality of truth in my face about the way the world really is.

Right now, there are literally people who are dying for the simple right to vote.

Do what I did at that moment: let that sink in.

Right now, there are literally people who are dying for the simple right to vote.

When you really think about that statement, how can it not change the way you view voting? I vote now because if I don’t, I’ll feel like I’m spitting in the face of one of those people fighting for that right. It would be like throwing a complete sandwich in the dumpster in front of a starving man.  That’s something I just can’t do.

Every time there is an election, my wife and I go out of our way to go to our polling site together, kid in tow. We want him to know how  special it is to vote, that it’s not just a right, but a privilege.  It’s something to get excited about every single time you do it. I tell my kid that every time we do. Then I tell him: “Do you know there are people in other countries who are dying for the simple right to vote?”

When I started writing this, I typed “there are too many reasons to vote to list here,” but with my non-voting friend in mind, let me try to sum it up with the space I have left.

Vote because as an American, it’s your duty.

Vote because you enjoy doing it when watching American Idol.

Vote because Arianna Grande gave up Twinkies and that’s the last straw.

Vote because it’s what the cool kids are doing.

Vote because you want to stop the godless liberals who want to impeach Trump and destroy America.

Vote because you want to see Trump impeached before he destroys America.

Vote because you care about the United States.

Vote because you care about California.

Vote because you care about Los Angeles County.

Vote because you care about Santa Clarita.

Vote because you care about your neighborhood.

Vote because you care about your friends.

Vote because you care about your family.

Vote because you care about your pet.

Vote because you care about yourself.

Vote because you would give a sandwich to a starving man before throwing it in the dumpster.

Vote because people in other countries are dying for the same right to vote.

As part of Radio Free Santa Clarita, a 501c3 non-profit, the Proclaimer cannot endorse candidates. Therefore, as publisher of the Santa Clarita Valley Proclaimer, the host of “The Talk of Santa Clarita’ and the President of Radio Free Santa Clarita, inc.  I will issue our one endorsement for this election which is:

Vote.

Vote like your life depends on it.

Vote because whether you believe your life depends on it or not, it really does.

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Summary
From the Publisher: Our Endorsement
Article Name
From the Publisher: Our Endorsement
Description
According to the IRS, we're not allowed to make candidate endorsements — so here's our single endorsement for the 2018 general election: vote.
Author
Publisher Name
The Santa Clarita Valley Proclaimer
Stephen Daniels

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1 COMMENTS

  1. MamaRock Posted on November 5, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    EXCELLENT COMMENTARY! Thank you Stephen!

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