Yesterday was Town Meeting Day here, and Super Tuesday in several other states. It looked like a mix bag for the GOP, with no clear winner emerging as both Santorum and Romney scooped up major delegate numbers. The final votes have not yet been tallied, but it's going to be close no matter what.
No matter who wins the nomination, the important thing is that yesterday symbolized what makes this nation great. Open democratic elections, free from tampering, violence, hostility, political ideology, and fraud. We don't have to worry about government operatives stuffing ballot boxes, or detaining dissenters to prevent them from voting. No one's life is in danger when they cast their vote. It's the pinnacle of free expression, and something that should be practiced whenever possible.
Aside from the primaries, there were votes on the local level too. While I tend to focus most on national politics, state and local affairs have just as much of an impact. No matter where you live, civics affects you. The number of people who vote has been rising, but it seems as though we still have many citizens who are not participating at any level. Like any right, the vote is something we must use if we don't want to lose it. I don't think we will ever lose the physical aspect of voting in America, but we can very easily lose the significance of a vote.When we place no emphasis on public policy and discourse, and allow the powers that be to simply continue their agendas without challenge, we lose our voice and potential for change.
It is an astounding thing to be able to influence one's own government. It is astounding that we have freedom of speech, of the press, and freedom of and from religion. But such rights as these are only as powerful and as important as we make them by our actions. So, go out, vote, and be a part of keeping America true to it's citizens. We deserve it.