Tuesday, November 4, 2008

What it is all about

While waiting in line to vote today I had the opportunity to speak to an 80 year old woman from North Carolina. In response to the statement "what is the point of voting? what can one vote do?" she had this to offer:

"If you had come up how I came up, when I came up, you would understand why I would stand on this line all day long if I had to. I never thought I would live to see the day when it was even possible for someone who looked like me to even have the chance to run for an office much less the office of president and that I would be able to vote. I was one of 15 children. We worked the cotton fields earning $.50 a bushel. A black person in office was not even something I could ever think about. But I thank God that I lived to see the day when it happened."

Regardless of party affiliations, regardless of who you voted for and why, this is what it is all about. The right to vote. The right to have our voices heard. My generation has always had the right to vote, and sometimes I think that we forget what the generations before us had to go through to secure that right for us. Today I spoke to a woman who knew what it was like not to be able to vote because of the colour of her skin, who knew what it was like to be afraid to vote because to do so could have cost her her life. I was humbled by her words to me today, and as I pulled that lever to cast my vote I did so with a respectful understanding and with a sense of profound gratitude towards those who went before me and made it possible for me to do so.

1 comment:

metgirl4ever said...

Amen. We, as minorities and as women, need to be reminded of the sacrifices those before us made so we could stand in line for hours. People risked their lives and their families lives to make this happen. How can you not respect and appreciate that??