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Get out and vote, you bastards. - Chronarchy

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November 8th, 2005


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07:35 am - Get out and vote, you bastards.
May the gods of my people hear my prayers;
as we go to the polls to choose our leaders,
may it be with wisdom.

       -Ceisiwr Serith, A Book of Pagan Prayer

It is always very nice to know that there's a book of Pagan prayer out there that's got some useful stuff in it. I took mine to the polls this morning, and prayed before I began voting. I prayed aloud, but in the confines of my booth, where no one else needed to hear me. It's interesting: I was praying for all of us, but didn't want to disturb my fellow voters. Not that more than five people would have heard me. . . turnout is shockingly low this year.

These "gods of my people," today's Teutates, are Ladies Liberty and Democracy, I think. If I've learned anything from my Paganism, it's that it can be a truly patriotic religion, on occasion deifying those things that we hold most sacred as Americans. Our concepts of freedom and equality are deeply rooted, and we believe firmly in them. We may consider dissent patriotic, along with the belief that tolerance should be held as a high standard (despite my problems with the word "tolerance"), but we are certain that our voice is important and that it will be heard.

Sometimes, I am disturbed by the serious lack of constructive criticism I hear from my Pagan peers, but then, it's about the level that I hear from everywhere else, too. Heck, no one is perfect.

After that short prayer I pulled out my candidate cheat sheet (giving political parties and other fun facts) and went to town.

I voted on the things that were important to me, and I'm happy with my choices. I also voted against my least favourite candidate on the ballot, Eddie Pauline, who quite literally stole my email address and keeps sending me crap.

As for issues? Well, I made my decision in the booth, as I always do. I voted for some things I didn't expect to and against things I expected to vote for. The funny thing is, I have a tendancy to forget what I voted for which issue when I leave.

Hell, I have trouble remembering which presidential candidate I voted for in 2000, and if I didn't know the precise issue that changed my mind while I was in the booth, I probably wouldn't even know who got my vote that year.

But I'm sure that I made the right choices for me. It's probably the longest I ever spent in the voting booth, reading through issues. But the thing about going to cast your vote? It feels empowering. It feels right. It feels good. (Even if, like me, you're unsure if your vote was counted in the last election.)

Yes, I expect my friends to have voted today. At least, if your voting day is today, as it is if you live in Ohio.

You cannot complain if you did not vote. And I really do feel that it is your civic duty. Some days, I figure regular trips to the polls should be a requirement for citizenship.
Current Mood: accomplished
Current Music: "Trouble on the Horizon", -JB

(46 comments Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:druidevo
Date:November 8th, 2005 01:47 pm (UTC)

Gods of our people

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Shouldn't Progress be in there too somewhere, maybe more as a mount for either Liberty or Democracy then as on equal footing.

And shouldn't Gods be capitalized?
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 02:08 pm (UTC)

Re: Gods of our people

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Well, as a complete title, then rather than capitalizing "Gods", I'd captialize "Gods of My People" as one proper phrase. Instead, I captialized "Teutates", which literally means "god of the tribe." (I didn't bother to decline it to make it plural.)

As for why I didn't actually capitalize "gods of my people", well, I was quoting Cei, who was not really describing a specific set of deities that were devoted to this cause, I think. I merely tacked that on as my personal meaning.

And yes, Progress would be another. I have provided, by no means, a complete list. :)
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[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 02:15 pm (UTC)
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Nope. But I imagine I know what it's kinda about.
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From:singingwren
Date:November 8th, 2005 02:21 pm (UTC)
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I feel pretty ignorant for saying this, but, uh, do I vote too? I'm confused. I'm not from around here, but I did register for Franklin County for the Presidential election, so I... assume I am eligible here? I've gotten no information about voting whatsoever, not even where the hell I am supposed to go and when. Maybe people just know that or something, but as someone who doesn't get a newspaper and just moved so politicians haven't found her yet, I am pretty much ignorant! Help? >.o
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 02:29 pm (UTC)
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If you are registered here, then yes, you vote here.

I have something that i took with me to the polls as part of my "who's what on the ballot" if you want it: it's a complete list of democrats. I never recommend voting a straight ticket, but it'll at least give you an idea of who each candidate is.

To find your polling place:

http://www.co.franklin.oh.us/boe/apps/voter/index.asp#location

That'll get you where you need to go.

Polls are open from 6:30 AM to 7:30 PM.

Don't tell them that you moved. You can fill out a change of address after the vote. So long as you're not cheating the system by voting in more than one place, you're fine.
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[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 02:30 pm (UTC)
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harangue people anyway! I would!
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From:ceolnamara
Date:November 8th, 2005 02:35 pm (UTC)
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I called my brother a quadzillion times to try and get him to register.

He was uninterested. But, I suppose I can understand- it wasn't til I came to OSU and accidently got put into the JGI program that I really cared about anything political.
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 03:10 pm (UTC)
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Is he registered for the Selective Service? If he's willing to register for that, shouldn't he seriously take an interest in registering to vote so that he can decide whether he ever gets called up?

That's a primary reason I registered.
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From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 03:12 pm (UTC)
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I walked in, voted, and walked out. Litereally, I spent more time in the booth deciding than I did in line.

And that was disappointing. Very, very disappointing.
From:tanrinia
Date:November 8th, 2005 03:43 pm (UTC)
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bah! where did you get cheat sheet????? i looked for one this year and couldn't find it!
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 8th, 2005 03:46 pm (UTC)
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They sent me one. Probably because I'm one of those problem children: someone who votes his conscience.

Being a registered independent with a listed phone number and address is like the mark of death. We had 6 calls on our answering machine last night about various issues and candidates.
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From:creature_tamer
Date:November 9th, 2005 03:26 am (UTC)
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Yes, I voted today. And not because of any nagging from you (I haven't been on LJ all day). ;)

And I'm winning! Take that issues 2, 3, 4, and 5! It's gonna be "back to the flour mill, Pappy!" Let the interests take care of themselves.
[User Picture]
From:_boy_
Date:November 10th, 2005 02:37 am (UTC)
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These "gods of my people," today's Teutates, are Ladies Liberty and Democracy, I think.

I've seen 19th-century quasi-neoclassical depictions of "Peace" (looking rather like Athena) and "Plenty" (Demeter), also. If I had to deify my political impulses, I would probably go powers like Athena and Demeter, "Peace" and "Plenty", or "goddess of civilization and culture" and "goddess of fruitful earth" - yes, come to think of it, Athena (and Demeter, to an extent)feel very "patriotic" to me.

As far as "Ladies Liberty and Democracy" go, I would say that Democracy is a temporal manifestation of Liberty rather than a separate spirit.


You cannot complain if you did not vote. And I really do feel that it is your civic duty.

I used to think so, but now I completely disagree - anyone can complain for any reason at any time in my book. Why can't you complain? If you didn't vote, obviously you don't feel that there was anything compelling on the ballot. In my experience, it would be more useful to categorize most non-votes as abstentions.

Hey! That's an idea! Let's make voting mandatory, but count all non-votes as a vote of abstention - if you can't get at least half of the population to vote for a candidate, that candidate can't in any meaningful sense be considered a legitimate representative of the popular will.

Or, we can get rid of plurality altogether and go for full representation. Then it might be said that your vote has consequences for which you can be held responsible. Then we might have something approximating "democracy". As it is, I think the electoral system is broke beyond repair, thus I don't blame anyone for not participating in it.

But the thing about going to cast your vote? It feels empowering. It feels right. It feels good.

Admittedly ineffective yet pleasurable - kinda like "civic masturbation."

;P
[User Picture]
From:chronarchy
Date:November 10th, 2005 01:05 pm (UTC)
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Dunno. I only categorize an abstention if someone actually makes an effort to abstain.

Otherwise, all laziness is abstension, as you point out.

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