I will be honest with you, my fellow Americans… and let me be perfectly clear..this election season saw my patriotism and faith in my country’s political process at an all time low.
Frankly, Scarlett..I didn’t give a rat’s ass.
I used to eat and sleep the news, and relished watching people blather and foam at the mouth, while having political shouting matches that chased my family from the TV room, leaving me alone in my caffeine-fueled, psycho world. It doesn’t get any better than election year for a cable news junkie.
That was the old me. Cable news watching, newspaper toting girl tore up her Republican voter ID, and re-registered Independent. It was my way of sending a message to our leaders..I’m sure they all lost several seconds of sleep over my exodus. See, in my fantasy world, everyone in America abandons the “Left” and the “Right”, forcing everyone to the “Center”. I sure do love the “Center” and all it’s glorious gray areas. Heck, even the word “gray” is gray..’cause sometimes it’s “grey”..we gray folks don’t care how you spell it. Like my Dad always said..there’s two sides to every story kiddo.
Truthfully, I nearly missed voting. It required some serious extra effort on my part to make it the polls and my apathy was about to win out, until my son asked me if I was going to vote. I thought about lying to him for a second, or just telling him that I was fed up with the whole shooting match..but I stopped short. I didn’t want to buzz-kill a thirteen year old’s awakening to the process..and I want him to learn to think for himself..not repeat his mother’s jaded views, as so many children will do. Anyway, I have already convinced them to hate the New York Yankees..my work is done.
So, I voted…and I am so glad I did.
When I arrived to the polls, there was the usual assortment of politicians and their supporters, shaking hands and shoving their pamphlets into my hands. I like to brush past them, tossing remarks like “well, if I haven’t decided who I am voting for yet, I probably shouldn’t even be here”… smug stuff like that. I have to have some fun. Pushing past the faithful, I came upon a loud, giggling band of Girl Scouts who were set up at a table, selling their delicious, evil little cookies which I am powerless at resisting. All of them talking at once..excitedly asking me to vote for my favorite cookie while they kept a running tally on their poster board.
No one tried to pressure me or bad mouth any of the cookies. A sweet girl with glasses and a serious expression waited patiently, marker poised at her poster, to record my vote. When I exclaimed “Thin Mint!”, she beamed and made her slash mark and then reaching up to my shoulder, placed her hand there, looked me dead in the eyes, and said “thank you”. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. What a joy these Girl Scouts were..and even something more important…faith restorers.
The Girl Scouts reminded why I should vote. Their excitement about the process was contagious, I went into the booth smiling, voting proudly.
I’m so glad I voted. Now, that half a box of cookies I had for breakfast..not so much…sigh.