If voting made any difference, they wouldn’t let us do it,” Mark Twain is believed to have quipped. However, there is no clear-cut evidence he said anything of the sort. Who ever first uttered those words did so anonymously. Little wonder. That person was wrong. And if you want to tell yourself that it makes no difference how or if you vote, you are welcome to. But you would be wrong as well.
After months of endless primaries and a campaign season like we’ve never seen, it’s time to end all the grandstanding. Americans will soon determine what happens to this country— and thus the world—during the next four years. Given the partisan balance of the Supreme Court and a planet on the edge of survivability, it’s a decision that will reverberate for generations.
By now, in most states, if you’re not already registered to vote, you’re screwed. You’ll have no say in determining what your federal, state and local governments will require of you, nor what services you’ll receive in exchange for your hard-earned tax dollars.
If you are registered to vote, or lucky enough to live in one of the few states that allow same-day registration, congratulations! Now go vote! Yes, it makes a difference. Even in high turnout elections, fewer than 60% of eligible voters bother to show up. Many contests, including Presidential races, are determined by just a few percentage points and sometimes far less, just a handful of votes. So vote!