I don’t want to hear about how your vote doesn’t count. Trust me, not many people’s votes count less than mine in my particular precinct in Harris County Texas. And if you don’t vote, I REALLY don’t want to hear you complaining about anything an elected official does or doesn’t do for you. The right to whine and bitch and moan is only afforded people who actually cast a ballot. Really. I’d vote for a constitutional amendment along those lines. If you care enough to complain, then you should care enough to vote.
Here’s a section from one of my favorite get-out-the-vote pieces this year, written by Lisa Falkenberg in the Houston Chronicle, who tries a bit of tongue-in-cheek reverse psychology:
So here’s the message for all those folks who don’t vote: it’s OK. Texas doesn’t need you anyway.
Don’t take that personally. It’s just that here in Texas, there’s an old-boy world order we’d like to preserve. We don’t need any young whippersnappers or disenfranchised janitors with voter ID issues or suburban soccer moms coming along with their silly ideas upsettin’ the status quo.
We in Texas love competition – in sports, in business, in public education. But not in politics. No Sir-ee Bubba!
The fewer choices the better. One choice is best, actually. The gal with the most money. The guy who’s been in office so long he may have grown lazy and unaccountable – but by God he’s predictable.
Surprises aren’t good in this biz. Stability is key. Democratic U.S. Rep Sheila Jackson Lee being re-elected every time since 1995 – that’s stability. Texas Republicans holding all statewide offices for a decade – that’s stability. Texas’ education system being in a perpetual state of unconstitutionality – that’s stability.
Now, if you’re feeling guilty, don’t. There’s no shame in apathy. Everybody’s doing it. In fact, it might be the only thing Texans can agree on, besides our fondness for bluebonnets, Tex-Mex and a good hard rain. Voting is for schmucks. In the last mid-term election, in 2010, nearly 70 percent of the state’s eligible adults were no-shows for the general election, according to the United States Elections Project maintained by a professor at George Mason University. Only one place had a lower turnout: D.C.