Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The right to vote

I received my forwarded mail from Texas yesterday which is always a delight. Buried within the various magazines and bills was a notice from Sonoma County mailed to Texas with the residence address listed as the Cloverdale park where I worked. All I had to do was return the card to them with the address where I want my ballot sent. Best of all is the box to check that I want to be a permanent absentee voter.

Woohoo and hallelujah! I can vote.

Some of you may be wondering why all the fuss. I take my voting right very seriously. When I was in college at 16, it was 1965. My mother was a Republican and my stepfather a Democrat. We would have discussions at dinner about current events and politics: local, national and international. We covered communism, socialism, the peace movement, Vietnam, unions and the economy. Every time there was an election and they received their sample ballots, my parents would argue for weeks about their political preferences: "You Republicans don't care about the working man." "You'd vote for a monkey if he was a Democrat." Then they would go to the polling place, stick their chins out and cancel each other's vote. But they voted.

One of the worst problems I had being in college at 16 in the 60s was the fact that I couldn't vote until I turned 21. Five years was a long time to wait when you're politically active. I was thrilled when the voting age was lowered to 18: too late to help me when I needed it but a much more reasonable age.

Ever since I was able to vote in the 1972 election, I have never missed an opportunity to do so. My record is intact and my vote will be counted this year.


  1. Go girl! We will make sure that we are able to vote when we go full time. I am very active in helping to elect both state and local candidates. I am a precinct chair and and election judge for the elections.

    My husband and I are like your family, but that is OK we each respect the others right to their opinion (even though I think he is wrong) HA HA

  2. Yeah, I remember the 1972 election clearly, because we were the FIRST 18-year-olds to vote in a U.S. presidential election. Remember our argument FOR that right? "If we're old enough to go to war and die for our country, we're old enough to vote in the elections." Too bad VietNam didn't teach us more about getting involved in global peace missions...(go ahead and argue with me, but I hate war)

  3. I know you were and I remember the argument. I had to wait until I was 21 and we had been using the same argument since I graduated from high school in 1965. I was 16 and five years was a long time to wait.

    No argument from me on peace. I've been an anti-war activist since we were called those pinko Commies.