Hold onto your seats cuz here we go! We're headed for a bumby ride on the policitcal campaign express. I'm seriously considering disconnecting my television until the election is over because it's "gonna git nasty" to say the least. The time we have left leading up to the November elections is going to be the political equivalent of a dog fight with blood spilled and innocent by-standers getting hurt in the process.
So, how do you protect yourself? The first thing you need to do is make sure you are an informed voter. Most people don't realize that the whole agenda behind all the negative campaigning is to turn undecided voters off so that they DON'T vote, leaving the field wide open for that party's base to get more impact with their votes. So, VOTE - don't stay home and whine. If every single registered voter in this country actually voted it would really shake the entire system up - talk about power to the people!
How you vote is up to you and please don't tell me you're not voting because your vote doesn't count. The best way to make sure your vote doesn't count is to not vote. Don't make me call you a dummy over this! Get off your butt, do some basic research, talk to people you trust and respect and make a decision. Be involved in the process of this great country and vote out of respect for all the men and women of all walks of life and color who have fought so hard for all of us.
Why am I so passionate about encouraging people to actually vote? Well I'm a veteran and I take the whole concept of our right to vote very seriously. I'm also female and in the early 1900's some very brave people (both women and men) sacrificed quite a bit to make sure women had the right to vote. If you are a female of voting age and you do not excercise this very important right then shame on you.
I'm on my way tonight for my first visit to the Hines VA Hospital with the VFW (Veteran's of Foreign Wars) in Naperville - a group I joined about six months ago. I served two tours in South Korea in the mid 1980's so I qualify to join the VFW. We're visiting the Spinal Cord Injury Unit and I'm both excited and a bit apprehensive because I'm not sure what to expect. I plan to blog about this experience next week. Here's the link to the VA site - http://www.hines.med.va.gov/
Part of my apprehension is due to the experience of losing my youngest brother to bone cancer in 1986. In fact, I came back from Korea on emergency leave twice during this time. It's always difficult to see young people experiencing a terminal disease or serious injury. I suspect that I'm going to be in awe of how brave all the patients will be and I'll walk away better from having met them. I'd like to encourage everyone to consider volunteer work either in a VA hospital or for an organization associated with veterans, because when you see what's at stake, especially if you don't vote, it just might encourage you to be a more responsible citizen.
Freedom isn't free. It comes with rights but also responsibilities. I hope everyone gets out and votes and proves just how responsbile they can be.
Take care - Terri Stone.