2003.11.5 – green party blues

Another Election Day has come and gone.

The Green Party had no representation in our little corner of Western New York, but that was no problem. Voting is a privilege and definitely not something to be taken lightly. Yes, I read up on the candidates before stepping into the booth this evening. It may have only been hours prior to my final decisions, but I was still informed.

The thing that irks me the most are the people that simply vote across party lines with no knowledge of the candidates or their platforms. Just because you register in a specific party does not mean that you are required to vote for those candidates.

Sometimes I actually do vote Republican **hush now** but only if the candidate is well deserving. Being in a new party makes it difficult to follow party lines. Although, sometimes I will vote for another candidate even if a Green Party person is on the ballot.

Speaking of the Green Party…here is a fun little story about trying to present alternate views to staunch Republicans and Democrats. A few nights back, the filmmaker and I went to dinner with some family members. The discussion (inevitably) turned to voting, as the election was pending, but there was no heated debate of candidates. The table was split about 50/50 between Republicans and Democrats, excluding the two freaks (that would be us) that are registered Green.

When presented with the idea that any individual would choose to register in a third party the table burst into laughter. Taunting us for being “tree-huggers” (which I actually do not find offensive, trees need hugs sometimes) and acting as if the Green Party was not worthy of our vote, the family began to turn on us. Slowly the conversation slanted away from the voting issue, mainly because there was no argument from the two of us as to whether or not our party was “real” as they put it.

I believe that voting is something that every American citizen should take part in, regardless of political beliefs or which party one registers for. We should have been praised for even getting off our butts to vote, rather than being mocked for our political affiliation. Most people in the 20-something generation are so disillusioned that they don’t even bother to vote, let alone register and inform themselves of political happenings.

Of course, letting the table know that we had come back from an environmental fundraiser the night before sealed our fate as the weirdoes. This is not right, but if I let it bother me I would be just like everyone else. Being a hippie means that people are going to pick on you. There is no way around it. So, the best defense is none at all, at least when dealing with Democrats and Republicans who feel that their parties are the only parties that should be allowed on the ballot.

Happy voting to one and all! Go out there and make a difference…It is truly the only way to affect change!


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