As a boy, I remember standing in line with my Dad while he waited to vote. I watched my neighbors greeting each other quietly, as if they were in the midst of a sacred act. All the adults of my childhood had lived through WW II, adding a sense of dignity, gravitas to casting a vote. They understood that democracy is a fragile enterprise, requiring each generation to recommit to this civic duty.
Today, we know the statistics, how a majority of us in the USA, don’t vote. This is particularly true in mid-term elections. We know too, that those who do vote are skewed older. People like me.
We know that elections have consequences. None more so than the 2016 presidential election. 2016 brought Mr. Trump to power as the Republicans ran the table (House, Senate and now controlling votes on the Supreme Court).
Some in our country are ecstatic. Others of us, not so much. In truth, many of us are deeply concerned, that the underlying values of this fragile enterprise we call a democracy, are under threat.
What gives me hope, is the millennial generation. As a whole, they have embraced values that bring out the best in us as a people: They value a pluralistic society (where races, religions, sexual orientations, cultures, mix and mingle…and where fear mongering is rejected). They value science, particularly Climate Change, knowing that their generation and the generations to come, will face the brunt of the current Administration’s denial. They see access to health care as a basic human right. They are the generation too most affected by gun violence. They are looking to elect candidates who are not in the pocket of the NRA.
It is true that younger generations don’t vote at the level of those of us who are older. But I think that is going to change.
Mr. Trump and his minions, have shown that elections have consequences. I’m looking to the generation of my daughters, to show us the way forward. To recommit to the values inscribed on the Statue of Liberty and in our Constitution.
I’m going to be standing and voting, with them. How about you?