I’ll be heading out shortly to vote today. I’m in California, and we have some really important issues on the ballot to deal with… most to say “no” to.
Prop 23 is an easy no. It suspends recent environmental policies until California’s unemployment rate remains under 5% for a given length of time, a year as I recall. Only thing is that even in good times, our unemployment rate is rarely that low. It’s funded by oil companies. One guess why they want Prop 23 to pass!
Prop 26 is another easy no. They’re trying to claim it’s about taxes, but it’s really about fining companies who pollute, to make them pay for cleaning up their own messes, or rather an attempt to allow companies to avoid those fines.
Prop 19’s an interesting one. I’m for marijuana legalization, even though I’d never use it. I don’t smoke or drink either. What I’m not certain of is that this one is the right way to go about it. It looks like the rules could get a little convoluted with all the regions able to set their own policies. If it fails, I want it to be a close thing, and for a better version to be on next year’s ballot.
Then there are the politicians running for office. On the big races, none of them make me happy, but I’m going Democratic because they make me less unhappy than their Republican opponents. Sometimes that’s what it comes down to.
I was hoping to vote early, but didn’t quite get around to it so I guess I get to experience any local lines in person. Not especially looking forward to that part. I don’t like standing in line. My sister suggested that I might get ahead in line due to pregnancy, as they would allow for disabilities, but I don’t think I feel that bad. Just achy.
I’m hopeful for the results, although dreading the possibilities of some outcomes. And here in California I know that if things such as Prop 8 (no gay marriage) fail this year, they will return to haunt us year after year. One of the problems with the proposition system is how easy it is for that to happen. I do get tired of seeing certain topics repeatedly.
I don’t pay much attention to the results as they come in. Only results I care about are the final ones. So I’ll probably be avoiding all news tonight, and checking on results early tomorrow morning. Hearing who won what can be exciting, especially in a campaign like this, but it’s just as interesting to hear about a little later as it is right away.
I know, I know, it’s a few weeks yet to the U.S. elections, but I think it’s important to be sure that you are making the time to educate yourself not only on who to vote for President, but for other offices and issues that are relevant to your area.
In California, for example, we have a bunch of propositions on the ballot. Happens every election, and my sisters and I are planning to get together this weekend to go over things. We don’t necessarily have to agree on them all, but it’s a reason to get our research done so that we will all know why we are voting the way we are.
We won’t be discussing Presidential politics. Most of us are in agreement, and at the very least minds are made up.
There are plenty of resources available to those who care to do the research. You can check your local newspapers, read through the tons of mail you may be receiving, or research online.
My favorite part is how easy it is to find both sides of the story. You aren’t just stuck with what the official analysis says. You can find opinions from people who have something to gain or lose as well as people who just have strong opinions they want to share. You can find opinions you think are idiotic and ones that will bring up points you hadn’t considered before.
It’s important to vote, but I think it’s more important yet to take the time to educate yourself before you vote. Otherwise you increase the chances that you will have misunderstood what you were voting on.