Don’t Be A Political Pansy…on Election Day.
The tag line I use to promote my book is “Don’t be a Political Pansy!” That is tongue-in-cheek advertising, and as much a joke as it is a challenge. But there really is a breed of political pansy out there. I normally serve up red meat on this site. There is so much we can devour! And I am serving up plenty of it elsewhere. But right now I am talking to EVERYONE. I may be preaching to the choir though. It is likely that the people this is directed at won’t see it because, well…they are the people it is directed at, political pansies. Who are these pansies? These are the people on both side of the political spectrum who harp endlessly on how screwed up everything is. They call names on Facebook and sit in the break room at work looking down their noses at politicians and the people that vote for them. But in reality they are too lazy and insincere to actually go out and make their own noise in a way that is constructive. These pansies have a laundry list of reasons to not fulfill their civic duty and vote. But my favorite is, “Why bother? It never changes. They’re all the same.” These pansies already know the answer to their own question. Things remain as they are because too many people say, “Why bother? It never changes.” By being that guy, you hand the worst of our politicians the advantage of incumbency and the comfort of knowing that not enough of the electorate is awake enough to impact their political ambitions. You have to trust me on this: If the political class woke up on Wednesday morning to find out 90% of the population voted (the results would be wildly out of sinc with what the talking heads are saying now) they would piss their pants! And rightly so. It would mean that they would have to start performing. They would have to shitcan their poll tested garbage and really try to make a difference. They would realize that all the special interest cronyism won’t protect them from US! And damn! Look how easy they have made voting! You can vote online, vote mail-in (used to be called absentee, and you can vote early. I have made my concrete concerns for these stupid ideas known in my book and here. Despite those misgivings, how much easier do you need it to be before you participate and drop the phony self-importance about how the man will keep you down no matter what crap?
HOW IT OUGHT TO BE
I was talking to my buddy Bob D. on Facebook the other day. We were in disagreement about a particular get-out-the-vote campaign. But on one point, I don’t believe there was a spark of light between us. I said that Election Day should be a bank holiday. Forget early voting or online or mail-in garbage. Only real cases should vote absentee. On election day, we should all gather and celebrate the day and the franchise, win or lose. Voting is at least as important as the Fourth of July! It’s way more important than Labor Day. There should be Election Day parties. No one allowed in without an updated “I voted” sticker. These parties should not be mandated by law, of course, but it would be an original party theme. On this day, even as the returns are still being counted, we are all one again. We all did our civic thing and now we are enjoying just being Americans. Tomorrow, it all starts again. But today, no rancor or discord would be of any use to anyone. Pass the beer and the brats! But what am I saying? [snide whiney voice] No one would ever do that. It’ll never change. Right? To this I would respond with a slightly non-contextual quote from Ken Olsen, founder of Digital Equipment Corporation in 1977: “There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home.” At the time, that was the prevailing wisdom. It would last less than 5 years. Of course we would need a center of influence bigger than my brilliant self to make Election Day a holiday. And what the hell, it would give Hallmark a reason to jack us up for a whole new set of greeting cards. Don't be a political pansy! Read Street Politics: It Ain't Your Daddy's GOP Anymore! Grab your copy here. Let's demand good governance!
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