Things That I’ve Been Told — Voting Edition

I don’t care who you vote for, just get out and vote!”

I’ve heard this (or some version of the sentiment) a million times in my life yet I’ve never been able to make any sense out of it.

It would make sense to me if you were out soliciting/persuading people to vote for a specific candidate and said “If you are voting, I do care who you are voting for, now get out and vote for [insert candidate's name here]“.

Personally, I’d probably ask “Why should I vote for [insert candidate's name here]?”, but I would at least respect that you felt some level of inspiration from that specific candidate to the point that you felt it necessary to let others see and hear your support.

When I hear “I don’t care who you vote for, just get out and vote”, I instantly taste a little bit of vomit in my mouth.

Maybe I’m crazy, but isn’t it nonsensical for me to actually believe that you “don’t care” who I vote for, considering the implications that my vote has on the community/city/county/state/country (in theory)?

What if I asked the person who said “I don’t care who you vote for, just get out and vote” who they were voting for and tell them it’s just so I can vote for the opposition, rendering their vote meaningless? I bet you that, instantly, they would care who I voted for. Obviously, that would make me come across as a jerk (I admit, it isn’t a hard role for me to play) but why wouldn’t you care who I am voting for if you are also going to be voting?

If you’ve decided that you’re going to vote, it’s safe to assume that you already have the candidate/s in mind that you plan on voting for. Maybe this is a less-than-safe assumption, but I would also hope that you have some kind of personal reasoning for why you’re voting for that candidate/s in the first place.

Does the candidate support a specific policy that I’m fond of?

Is the candidate pushing to get more services that I desire?

Do I share the same favorite color as the candidate?

Why wouldn’t you want to share who you think people should vote for? If anything, you should share with the hopes of either inspiring others to go vote or even with the hopes of changing their mind about who they’ll be voting for if they weren’t originally supporters of your candidate of choice!

My theory is that voting makes people feel important and a part of something bigger. Some people get off to the idea that others know that they are active in politics/part of the process/ informed on the issues/ blah blah blah and feel the need to make a silly declaration like “I don’t care who you vote for, just get out and vote!” so that the rest of us might understand just how important the act of voting is! I mean, it must be important because you don’t even care how I vote, it’s just the act of voting that seems to appease.

Since it’s already been established that you don’t care who I vote for, can we extend that to also mean that you ultimately shouldn’t care if I vote at all?

love,

joshua