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The Kansan - Newton, KS
  • The day is here 

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  •  The day is almost upon us. The day we can all be very thankful for —election day. There are plenty of reasons to be thankful for Tuesday — Not only does it signal an end to the political ads filling up our mailboxes and television sets, and the annual Lion’s Pancake Feed — it’s a great opportunity. It’s the time we get to exercise our right — to have our lonely, small voices heard. If you are not one of the more than 1,000 people in Harvey County who have already filled out a ballot, make it a point to do so. Saturday you can do so at the courthouse, as you can Monday morning. Do it. Go and be heard. Tuesday the regular polling stations open. Look up your station if you haven’t voted in a spell, and go cast your ballot. The right to vote has been won by blood, sweat and tears of those who have come before us. It’s a gift, and we should humbly make use of that gift every time we can. This election there are important decisions all over the ballot. The offices of President, U.S. Representative, State Representative, State Senate and County Commission are all awaiting you to decide their memberships. That’s a big deal — a very big deal. If you are unhappy with the job of any of the people who fill those spots, this is your chance to do something about it. If you like what you’ve seen from those folks, this is when to tell them. In the run up to the election there has been a barrage of advertising —print and broadcast media, direct mail and Internet — to sift through as we make our decisions. At the end of the day, your vote is your decision. For those who don’t vote, we have a message —your right to complain about decision makers is gone Nov. 7. You had your chance. You very well could have walked into that booth and voted for someone other than the person who got elected. And if your candidate loses, we have a message for you as well — give the winner a chance. They might be the bonehead they were portrayed to be in those mailers and attack ads — but it’s likely they are not. Talk to them about your concerns civilly, and don’t attack them as a person. We should be thankful we can help make these choices — and with two weeks of advanced voting, mail ballots and election day there is really no excuse to disrespect those who have given this gift. Vote. Just do it. To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, it feels wonderful afterwords. No more rah-rah speeches. No more stumps. No more encouragement, no tearing down a candidate. The time for the decision is now —help it get made. 
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