To The Editor:
“Thanks to the voters” (an editorial that appeared in the April 11 edition of The Record), what a great editorial. We should all be concerned about the low voter turnout. I don’t have the statistics, but I would bet that the problem is nationwide and that voting interest has been waning for years. The only possibility for improvement is trying to understand why, and taking whatever actions we can for resolutions.
There is a myriad of reasons why folks do, or do not, vote. We as a community can focus on some the obvious ones. I think it is a symptom of changes in our complicated existence — changes from absurd to enlightening and beneficial — that affect the way we prioritize, plan and conduct our lives. In our community key contributors could be news media, school systems, potential voters, parents and elected officials.
First and foremost is remembering the countless lives that were lost preserving our representative government, as well as the years of struggle of significant groups to be allowed to vote. I don’t know what political sciences and civics are covered in schools these days, but I hope it inspires interest and generates a desire to participate in the voting process.
A focus on local politics could be beneficial for the learning process, as well as developing reasoning abilities. Students could attend public meetings and representatives could speak at schools.
A good study could be familiarization with a property tax form. They could understand how voting can impact our social and financial lives. An example could be what happened when they couldn’t share a ballfield.
Is there a contingency plan if the voting age is lowered?
Representatives, give us something to vote on, or for, and what and how you represent us. When campaigning, most of you tell us all about your personal life and the usual boilerplate statements. Most of the time they are so similar that other than your close friends, there’s not much to make a decision on. Could (that) be a reason why some don’t vote?
When you cause something to be on the ballot, pretend to be a doctor and tell us the side effects. Why not give us a clue? What, when and how are you going to represent us, and what are you against?
News media could publish a simple metric analysis including: history of total voter population, actual votes, etc. Could be a quick view of how serious the problem really is.
Me: Whenever I hear someone complain, I ask, did you vote and why?