I do not vote.
I have never voted in a public election in my life. I imagine I can already hear some of tsking at me. If I told you this in a more casual fashion, rather than making a point of it, what would you conclude? Would you think I was just lazy? Would you think I was just some cynical, disaffected gen-X person, overreacting just because the system is flawed? Are you itching right now to tell me why I should vote? (If so, too bad, because I'm turning off comments on this post to avoid just that.)
I do not vote as a matter of principle. I have my reasons. I don't really feel like sharing them, and it would take pages and pages and pages of blog space to even begin to explain them properly. I'm also not really in the mood to debate them with other people. Really, my point in posting this is to ask people to consider the possibility that this is a valid choice that I have made after a great deal of thought.
And so I have a request for those of you who do vote, especially those who are frustrated by the missing 'post a comment' link and just aching to explain to me why I should vote: think about why your vote. I know the standard line that gets dinned into children in this country. Its your civic responsibility and the system doesn't work unless you participate and if you don't vote you have no right to complain about the government and its not a perfect system but its the best we have and voting is still better than throwing your voice away. (I think I hit all the standards there.) Have you actually thought it through, or do you just believe it because you've been told it from a young age and it kind of makes sense if you think about it casually? Have an actual think about it, if you haven't already.
In the end, it doesn't so much matter to me whether you agree with me or disagree with me. What I want is for people to think about why they do what they do. Failing that, I'll settle for not being told what to do. Don't tell me to vote. I promise not to tell you not to.