The alarm jarred us awake at 5:45 A.M. It was still dark and the house had not warmed up yet. We threw on clothes, grabbed our voter registration cards, and headed out the door. Once we were in the car, we remembered to finally use our voices and say good morning to each other. The polls opened at 6 A.M. and we were determined to do our civic duty first thing in the morning so my husband could get to work just about on time. Who else would be up as early as we? We got our answer when we pulled into the parking lot of the community church which was our voting place. The parking lot was packed, and the line snaked out the door and across the front of the building.
“Doesn’t look too bad,” I commented, as we got into line. The woman in front of us ruined my optimism when she told us that this was just the tip of the iceberg. Once we got in the door, they were herding us into the auditorium where another 150 were already gathered. I wouldn’t have minded so much if I had had a jelly doughnut and a cup of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee in my hand. Surprisingly, we were finished in fifty minutes, and we headed home to start our workday routine, only a half hour behind schedule. It felt good to start the day by voting.
I know many people are not happy with our choices this election year. Though that is always the case with some people every four years, it seems particularly to be the case this year. I have even heard people say they aren’t going to vote because it doesn’t matter or it’s their way of protesting that they don’t like either candidate. But it does matter. Ask people in Syria if it matters. Ask the people in China if it matters. In fact, ask the people in many countries, even some of those who say they have “free” elections if being able to cast your vote matters. I think they would like to be in our position, even if they aren’t thrilled with either candidate.
The bottom line is that both men running for president are good men. They have done good things, have wonderful wives, and nice families. They both care very much about what happens to this country and are in this election more for us than for themselves. Who would take on the intense scrutiny into their private lives and the name-calling, the sleepless nights, the pay that is nowhere in line with their responsibilities, and the weight of the world on their shoulders unless they truly wanted to serve this country?
So we dragged our tired bodies out of bed in the dark and drove to the polls, sans our morning coffee, to do our civic duty. I hope you have done or will do yours.