Get Out and Vote!
By Aoife Barrington-Haber
Super Tuesday is almost here, and I hope you care. The pollsters are again predicting a poor voter turnout. I even heard on NPR news that Massachusetts democrats traditionally have a lackadaisical attitude when it comes to the showing up at the booths. What?! Are you kidding me? You know what I call that? A challenge!
Whatever your political leanings on the candidates or the issues (and there are some very interesting referendi on the ballot this time around), I sincerely hope you will vote. We Unitarian Universalists should consider it our sacred duty.
Our Fifth Principle states that we affirm and promote “The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process in our congregations and in society at large.” (In Spirit Play, it is the Blue Promise, “Believe in your ideals and act on them.”) Furthermore, in order to achieve our 6th Principle, “The goal of world community with peace, liberty and justice for all,” we must do the work required (see Fifth Principle). If we want to change the world for the better, we must make our voices heard.
It seems insane to me that anyone in this country would take for granted their right vote, especially when less than 100 years ago, women were not allowed. All around the world, groups of voters are kept from the polls by threats and violence because of their race, religion or social status.
Sadly, many US citizens in the South will be turned away this week due to lack of proper identification. I may be preaching to the choir here, but it bears repeating. Vote. Offer someone a ride. Take your children into the booth with you and teach them about the importance of putting their principles into action. Do it for our Unitarian and Universalist pioneers, like Clara Barton, Susan B. Anthony, and Julia Ward Howe. Do it because Fox News is trying to convince women not to vote. Help your neighbors vote by offering a ride or watching their kids.
Whatever the outcome on Wednesday morning, you will know you played an important part by showing up and voicing your ideals.