I admit it.
I did not vote today.
Making this story even more pathetic is this exchange I had with my husband last night:
Husband: Are you going to vote tomorrow?
Me: No, and you're not going to either.
Husband: I know, I never vote. But I thought you usually did?
Me: I do, but I can't vote tomorrow because we didn't register when we moved.
Husband: Do you want me to drive you to Westchester so you can vote?
Me: We didn't register there either.
Husband: That's great, so you can vote in the City! That's closer!
That's right, I didn't register to vote when we moved from New York City to Westchester two years ago, or when we moved again to the great state of New Jersey. To be honest, I didn't even really think about the elections happening today at all.
Actually, that's not completely true. For a few minutes this morning I was very worried I was missing an important meeting at my kids' school. I kept thinking to myself, "Wow, a lot of people are going into the school today. The mom and the dad."
Then I realized why there were so many adults, and that all of them seemed able to find the time to both register and to actually vote.
And yes, I felt even worse then I did when I realized I wouldn't be voting today.
This post was written on election day last year. Sadly, one year later, I am still not a registered voter in New Jersey. Next year, for sure.
Today, bloggers have organized the first ever "Blog-In" to send a message to politicians that we-the-people are hopeful that candidates in the upcoming election season will focus on the most important issues Americans are facing today - from being without jobs to being without health-care to being without well-funded public schools.
You can join the Blog-In, read the full letter, or learn more at the Blog-In Roll Call.
Below is an excerpt from the Blog-In letter:
Dear 2012 Presidential Candidates,
We are your future constituents and we are parents.
We are American mothers and fathers and grandparents and guardians. Our families might be the most diverse in the world. Blended and combined in endless permutations, we represent every major religion, political ideology and ethnic culture that exists.
Our very modern families embody the freedom that defines America. We embody America. We are rich in diversity, but we are united in our family values. We come together today, with one voice, to express our grave disappointment in the national political discourse.
We are living in a time where 15.1% of Americans now live in poverty, the unemployment rate stands at 16%, and we are spending close to $170 billion annually between the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan*.
Given the current state of affairs we would expect every candidate to focus on the issues that truly matter: job creation, debt-relief, taxes, education, poverty, and ending the war(s). Instead, it is already clear to us that the conversation has been hijacked, with the goal of further polarizing our nation into a politically motivated and falsely created class-war.
We will not stand for another campaign year in which politicians presume to know what our family values are as they relate to the nation.
To be clear, here are our family values:
Affordable health care, including family planning, for all Americans.
Access to education, and the ability to actually use it.
A reinstatement of regulations for banks issuing mortgages and full prosecution for those who engaged in fraudulent lending practices.
A return of strict environmental regulations protecting water, air, food, and land that were removed in the last two decades.
Family planning, healthcare, education, economic solvency and environmental safety: these are our national family values.
Candidates who demonstrate the ability to understand the gravity of these issues, and their impact on our families, and who can provide actual, viable solutions to these problems will garner our support and our votes.
We believe in this democratic system of ours, and we will continue to use our voices and our votes to see that it reaches its fullest potential.
Your future constituents,
The mothers & fathers of America
* Sources for stats:
What do you think are the biggest issues in the upcoming elections?