I guess what I want to work for is a society where we do look out for each other, and those being looked out for give back something in return. Heaven knows there is plenty to be done. And we can’t do it from the top down; it has to come from the grass roots up. So how do we do this? I’ve got a lot of thinking to do. I may go Independent. Some commentators see Independents as being wishy-washy or undecided. I believe they are people who refuse to be stuck with a label that doesn’t fit.
One item first off. There were a lot of comments on the Jefferson Exchange this morning about the apparent under vote from younger voters. I’m actually more ticked off by the excuses I heard for not voting than I am about the election results. Repeat after me: “my vote is my voice. It’s my way of having a say in the way the country is going to look ten, twenty, thirty years down the road. Think of these choices as a flow chart. It starts at the beginning. Certain choices are made. Each choice leads to new forks in the road. By the time you notice that the locomotive is going full speed and the bridge is out......................
The comment I heard most often was, “neither party speaks to the concerns of my age group. Well, here’s a concern for you. The policies made by the people in office now are going to shape the world you’re going to be living in when you get old enough to worry about it. If you want a voice in how that world is going to look. YOU HAVE TO VOTE NOW!
I suspect that voters are made, not hatched fully formed and politically aware. My parents voted. They talked about voting. My dad grew up in the Scholls-Newburg area of northwestern Oregon. It was a farming area and everybody would be there when the polls opened. The head of the precinct board would make a short speed officially opening the polls for voting. At the end of the day, there was another little speech officially closing the polls. He told that story a lot.
We’ve taken two newspapers for as long as can remember. There might have even been three early on. The Eugene area had two papers at one time and I think we took both of them as well as the paper from Portland. We’ve taken the National Geographic for years and sort of vibrate between Time and Newsweek. This was on a logger’s pay by the way. Dad used to talk about guys he worked with who said they couldn't afford the papers or magazines but could afford the latest gadgets. He'd just say that he guessed his piorities were different.
We may not have had a lot of “stuff” but our brains were kept busy. Dad used to quote my grand dad. “There are two things I won’t argue about: politics and religion.” He didn’t argue about them, but he talked about them and the discussions were pretty lively.
I guess, what I’m trying to say is that waiting for something to come up that concerns you directly is too late. The future starts now.