princess genevieve

mercredi, septembre 13, 2006

Well Done, Sister Suffragette

In continuing yesterday's voting theme, I thought I'd talk about why I think it's important to vote. For me, there are two main reasons.

First, and true of anywhere I live, I feel like it's necessary for me to exercise my right to vote because someone fought really, really hard for me to have the right. She went to jail for it and was maybe force fed through a tube when she went on hunger strike. She spent her whole life fighting for it, even if it went against what her husband or family wanted her to do.

So I feel like if I didn't vote, I would be disappointing all the Suffragettes. They fought so hard for me, and I'm not about to throw all they did away.

The other reason, and it's a pretty unique reason, is because I live in Washington, D.C. We don't have voting rights in our own Congress, even though we pay taxes, serve on federal juries, and can serve in the armed forces just like all other Americans. We don't have complete autonomy (called "home rule" here) over our own laws and budgets. Congress (which we have no representation in) does. District residents couldn't vote in presidential elections until 1964.

So I feel like if I didn't vote, I'd be telling Congress that I don't care about all that. That I don't want representation. That it's OK for Congress to change laws that the citizens of the District of Columbia have decided upon themselves. That someone from Montana or Tennessee or wherever should decide whether or not District residents can have guns in their homes. (For the record: right now, they can't. I'd like to keep it that way.)


At 9/14/2006 1:21 AM, Blogger Paisley said...

Does Congress include both the House of Reps and the Senate? No federal representation at all for DC?

As for reasons to vote (or why I would even it wasn't compulsory) - I reckon that exercising the right vote is making payment for the right to complain about the things that are done in our "name".

At 9/14/2006 10:22 AM, Blogger Genevieve said...

Yep, Congress includes both the House & the Senate. No federal representation at all for us. There's a bunch of movements right now - one to make us a state, one to give us full representation, and one to give us representation in the House only. We have a delegate in the House (instead of a representative) and she can vote in committee, but not on the floor. So she can't actually vote on bills and stuff.

and yeah, I agree with you, that's a good reason to vote too!

At 9/14/2006 12:30 PM, Blogger Amie said...

That whole DC thing is weird, I have to admit. I have never really understood it.


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