Today is Election Day. If you have any problems voting today -- including (but not limited to) finding your polling place, voter intimidation, accessibility issues, voting machine problems, and provisional ballot issues -- call 1.866.687.8683, a.k.a. 1.866.OUR.VOTE. (In Spanish, that phone number is 1.888.839-8682, or 1.888.VE-Y-VOTA.) You may also call the U.S. Department of Justice's Voting Rights Hotline at 1.800.253.3931.
Voting, as I've often said, is a citizen's minimum duty in America -- this is our government, no matter how little it resembles a good government, and we citizens must make it a good government, first on Election Day and then on every day thereafter. But too many of us think the only time we have a voice is on Election Day -- a notion legislators incessantly promote, of course -- and that's a shame, since (as I've also said) Election Day is one day out of the 1,441 days of a President's term. You have a voice every day; no law prevents you from contacting your Congressfolk or state legislators about anything, at any time, and their staffers aren't there to challenge you or ram their boss's agenda down your throat; they're there to listen to you and take note of your will. So we'll get right back to the action alerts tomorrow. We have a busy few days ahead, as Congress is no doubt contemplating ramming the Trans-Pacific "Partnership" down our throats, regardless of their stated reluctance to do so. Congress will also try to damage the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and will even try to codify "religious" discrimination in federal law via the Russell Amendment to the defense authorization bill. Regardless of who wins what where tomorrow, we have to stop all of that.
Which leads me to my final point. I'm not in the habit of telling people how to vote, but I will say you should never vote for a candidate merely to forestall the catastrophe that could be brought about by some other candidate's victory. If we do that, frankly, we're not doing a very good job being Americans, because last I looked, our heritage as freedom-loving people did not include being a hostage to fear. But I'm not saying you should wait for some candidate to come along and "inspire" you, either, because, frankly, this is America and you should be inspiring you. Ultimately, you should vote for the candidate whom you think will do a better job listening to you when you inform your government of your will, because, as I've said above, informing your government of your will is your job and your duty as an American. And that's true regardless of whether you think it'll do any good or not! Because I've seen the American people do great good, and under quite adverse circumstances, and if you see it happen even once, you'll want to help make it happen all the time.