People sometimes think that their votes really don’t make a difference. They see the “system” as being crooked and unfair. The rich get richer–while the poor continue to suffer.
Though that seems to be the outcome a great percentage of the time; your vote DOES matter, and most definitely counts. You can look at progress made over the years and see how voting for issues and demanding change carries the day. Even though sometimes, it can be a long, hard and slow process.
This is the first of several articles where we will discuss the reasons why voting is important and processes you can employ to make change in your community and local government. Then, reflect those same changes in your state and federal government.
But first, let’s think locally. Are you wanting change in your town or community? Or, how about the way law enforcement interacts with you and your community. Voting in local elections can play a vital role in making those changes happen. But, what if you can’t vote? Unfortunately, that is the case with some folks here, in America. But, just because you can’t vote, doesn’t mean you can’t bring up issues that need to be addressed to people who can. Start going to community meetings. Talk to people in the community who either have leadership roles or are natural voices within the community. They can speak for you to make the changes happen.
Along with determining who your mayor and council representatives and city officials will be, voters can also influence what public services are offered. Parks and recreation, taxes and a host of other things can be influenced as well. Voters can even help determine what items should be placed on ballots for general/public voting and whether or not they should be financed by bonds.
There are so many things that can be decided by a vote. You should treasure it and use it wisely. I know sometimes you might be out of place when the vote occurs… but you can still make an effort to still vote by absentee. Finally, for this article, a few things to consider before the vote occurs.
Things to Consider
- Voting is more than pulling a lever in November.
- Research the issues
- Research the candidates
- Research procedures…(How to make things happen)
- What needs fixing in your community
- Form groups & community review boards
- Formulate a plan and strategy
- Be strategic in how you move things from the local to state level. It takes planning and organization. So be prepared to work with others in a win/win approach to the issue.
- Be prepared to move to the federal level. Though a lot of people don’t see their problem as a national issue, think outside of the box and be ready to address issues on a broader scale if necessary. Think about the issue of police brutality. It seemed to have started out as a local issue. But, as the problem increased, more and more communities realized it was happening in a lot more places than just their town or community. Thus the arise of groups like Black Lives Matter.
When people work together, changes can and will happen.