Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Guardmembers: Rock the vote!

We Oregonians are lucky. We get to vote by mail.

Having grown up in Hawaii, and having lived in Nevada for some time, I know first hand how convenient mail in ballots can be. Those two states have had, and continue to have, traditional punch-card type ballots, requiring voters to take time off from work or school in order to cast their vote.

So when one looks at the historical numbers of voting rolls here in Oregon, it's sad to see the highest voter turnout at around 65%. Because voting is so convenient here, this number should be so much higher.

In particular, those of us in uniform carry a special responsibility to turn out on November 4th and cast our votes... indeed, we are an example to other Oregonians in terms of service, sacrifice, and civic duty.

Furthermore, the very fact we have chosen to wear our nation's uniform and defend the freedoms and liberties we all enjoy as Americans means we defend that very right. That we are allowed to chose how our government is run is a model for the rest of the world.

Many of us have served overseas and have witnessed first-hand, elections rife with corruption or cronyism. Some countries don't even have elections--their citizens have no say whatsoever. Still other nations continue to this day to persecute their citizens for speaking out against their government officials and policies.

In light of these points, we should consider ourselves quite privileged.

This post is not an endorsement of any one candidate or initiative... to do so would be both illegal and unethical. It is, however, a call to action for all of us who proudly wear the uniform of America's military.

We train, fight, and die to protect the many wonderful freedoms our country has to offer, including the privilege of voting. Let's not take it for granted.

Please, before today is over, make sure you cast your vote and let your voice be heard.

Tech. Sgt. Nick Choy,
State Public Affairs New Media Manager

No comments: