Today was the Primary Elections here in California. And for the first time I actually had to go in to a polling location to vote. And I'll be honest, it kinda freaked me out, so much so that for a brief moment I almost decided not to go.
See, I've always been a vote-by-mail person because when I first registered, my home address was out in the middle of nowhere-ville. (okay, it wasn't really, but apparently by voting standards it is.) Well for some reason this year, I didn't get my mail in ballot. So I had to actually go it. Eek! Have I ever mentioned that I don't like doing new things by myself? If I'm with someone else, I have no problem and totally confident, but when I'm by myself, I freak out. I'm so weird. Anywhoo...
I figured out where my polling location was (the fire station a couple of streets over from my house) and showed up to vote.
Like I said earlier, I almost didn't go. But then I remembered a discussion I had with my co-workers four years ago about voting. They belong to a church which says that it's against their beliefs to vote.
AGAINST THEIR BELIEFS?! I'm sorry, but this just shocked me. I've grown up with the knowledge that God requires his people to stand up for Him, to do His work. And sometimes this means by voting.
Let me say that I don't have a problem with this particular religion. I respect the friends I have that belong to it and I respect their personal standards (which are quite similar to mine)...but I do have a concern with one that says that they can't/shouldn't vote. People have died for this right for hundreds of years.
That is our right and obligation as Americans. People founded this country based on the unalienable rights of freedom to choose our leaders and practice our religion. People have died for us to have this right. The only way I can honor the lives that have been sacrificed for my rights and freedoms is to excercise them.
I'm grateful for a testimony of a God that encourages--even commands-- us, me to stand up for what I believe in.
I despise politics. I can't stand hypocritcal and lying politicians. But as much as I can't stand the arguing and negative ads that elections always bring out, I still vote and make my opinion known.
So today I am grateful that I have the ability, right, and obligation to vote and have my opinion help (in however small a way) shape the State of California and my country, the United States of America.