I don’t really believe in voting. I know that’s not the most original sentiment and even sounds like the type of overwhelmingly “look how anti-establishment I am – I’m sure that no one else is as serious about it as I am” phrases for which I could call someone out. But, my argument is the same as the usual (it’s super-rare for one vote to matter) and the wonderfully apolitical “status quo” thing. Case in point: the big hubbabaloo about the balance of power shifting to the Democrats in Congress last November. A whole lot of nothing has come of that. Iraq is still going on and the president’s rather liberal immigration make-over was deeee-nied. Status Quo!
Every November, this leaves me at a cross-roads – what’s a better way to waste my vote? To not vote? To go to the booth with zero knowledge of anything going on? Yesterday I chose the latter.
First, let me say that the voting location, The Pennsylvania Institute of Technology, is probably the creepiest set of buildings I’ve ever seen/been inside. Architecture that screams “stay out,” the type of church/chapel that you’d see in a movie where the devil comes back and has his big face-off with a holy warrior, big trees which make creaking sounds at night, and worst, a wholly inadequate access road for fire trucks.
Having manned up enough to get out of my car, I walked around rather aimlessly looking for an entrance to the fortress. No doors were labeled, but I managed to walk into what I learned was the completely wrong wing of a building that I’m sure you’ll see on Ghost Hunters in a few years when the county condemns the place. Voting was simple – I signed my name, waited in line with one person in front of me, listened to one of the other voter’s 3-year-old scream like a maniac, then was next in line.
I got into the booth which had electronic push buttons, then developed a strategy. I saw there were a lot of women in the races, so simply, for every random guy I voted for, I voted for two random women. I also made a point not to vote for the school board person who registered under both Democrat and Republican. How dare he make a mockery of our two party system! How dare he!
So, having done my part for women’s lib., I pressed the green “vote” button to lock it all in, and I had just done my civic duty. Of course, if Delaware County effectively closes down for one week each month due to my voting patterns, maybe I did more harm than good. (I should really be a stand-up comedian.)
Throwing Your Vote Away gets four stars. It sticks it to the man (or maybe the woman, in this case) and gives me slight moral superiority over those that protest voting by completely not voting. Unfortunately, it kind of takes a long time getting there, finding the right entrance, then getting back (especially if the voter in question chose to man-it-out and not actually look to see where the place was, and instead, relied on the “fact” that he could, in his mind’s eye, picture the street sign which said “Manchester” though he had no idea where that sign he was remembering actually was.) In terms of doing even more to throw a vote away I have a few options: vote on only one item – so when they talk about about how many people voted, the actual races will have fewer total votes than there were actual voters OR play battleship with the two columns of little lights which glow when you press the candidates’ names. Ah, democracy.