Signs, cards, billboards and commercials are everywhere. Folks knocking on your door, friends sporting T-shirts with their candidate’s name front and center, a candidate you’ve never met before, asking for your vote.
And while election fatigue is slowly setting in, it’s time to stand up, shake it off and get in the game. The most important part is almost here. It’s the part where you get to partake.
There’s lots of talk about why candidates run. Back room deals, good-ole-boy politics, the talk is out there. I call hogwash on most of it.
The men and women who run for local offices do so because they care about this community, and they want to make it better.
Call me naive. Call me what you want. And yes, there are bad apples. But that won’t stop me from voting. In fact, I vote to insure there are fewer bad apples.
While all elections are important, the day in and day out impact of local elections are of the utmost importance. I mean, try as I might, its doubtful I’ll find President Trump sitting next to me at Olive Garden, where I’ll have the opportunity to give him my 2 cents about the wall. But chances are I’ll see my county commissioner at the grocery store, and when I do, I’m going to chat him up on everything that’s on my mind. Poor guy might want to turn his cart around when he sees me coming, but so goes life in small-town living.
And it doesn’t matter what side of the wall you stand behind, your voice should be heard either way.
When I was 6 years old, my parents moved to the United States. It’s a long story that I’m always more than happy to share, but in the end, my brother and I fulfilled my parent’s hope of a better life. My Greek daddy lives in Memphis now, and if you drive by his house, you will see a tall flagpole with an American flag, flying in his front yard. It’s quite the site in his small subdivision.
On Election Day, dad gets up, gets dressed and votes in a country where his vote matters. He came from one where it sometimes didn’t.
On that same day, I vote, in the only country I know and truly believe my one vote counts.
And most times we cancel each other’s votes out. It drives me slightly crazy that no matter how much I try convince him otherwise, he always votes for the other side. But that’s his right.
These men and women that are shaking hands, walking up long driveways just to look you in the eye and ask for your vote, are the heart and soul of this community. Dare I say, this country.
Forget about the multi-millionaires running for office for the grander positions. That’s a whole different article for another day.
Today, I’m talking about the little guy or little gal – the ones who impact you and I the most. Read the material they’ve given you, go to their websites or Facebook pages, ask your friends who know them why they are voting for them, find their number and call them yourself.
My guess is they’ll take your call. Then vote.
And when the elections are over, the signs are all gone and the shirts are put away, keep an eye on the people who are in office.
Because then is when it really matters.
Comments? Email Angel Kane at [email protected] Becky Andrews and Kane are the brains behind Telling Tales, a weekly column in The Democrat.