Feature Editorial

What if ALL Eligible Voters Went to the Polls?

By Tarek Lucien Radjef.

About our right to vote … The United Nations Universal Declaration on Human Rights states that “The will of the People shall be the basis of the authority of the government. This shall be expressed by periodic and genuine elections.”

Thomas Jefferson observed that “We do not have a government by the majority of the people; we have a government by the majority of the people who participate.” In other words, if we don’t participate we have forsaken representation.

It is our opinion that if every eligible voter in our country voted, it would be extremely difficult for Republicans with their current views to win elections anywhere and at any level, Southern states included.

The County Would be Blue

National Democratic Party leaders and all of us in the Collin County Democratic Party know that if every eligible voter went to the polls the country would be “blue.”

President Obama, in a Speech on March 19, 2015, made arguments hinting that maybe we should have mandatory voting in this country. Indeed, twenty two nations around the globe already have mandatory voting. That would solve our under-representation but Republicans would certainly oppose it.

Indeed, Secretary John Kerry said last year at a luncheon at the Belo Mansion “I believe we are the only Democratic country in the world where a Party actively tries to suppress the people’s vote.”

Last month, Madeleine Albright at SMU’s McFarlin packed auditorium said: “Voting is not only a privilege; it is a responsibility.” Every candidate and party spokesperson should include this statement or an equivalent form of it in their speeches.

Is Our Vote an Obligation?

We know we have the right to vote but do not consider it an obligation. Consequently, we find multiple reasons not to go to the polls. The most common one is that our vote is not going to make any difference anyway. Other reasons: We did not register for various reasons; we are too busy; we procrastinated until the last day and then something unexpected got in the way; etc.

The ‘RESPONSIBILITY’ part of voting needs to be spoken up at every opportunity. Schools must also help. Last November, we witnessed a few parents who voted accompanied by their children. What a great way to get them started!