This election season, vote for the community, not the candidate

Don’t be a victim

As a native of Wacoan and someone who has been politically active most of my life, I have felt the ever growing political divide every year. I transferred from Baylor University to George Washington and witnessed everything from Black Lives Matter protests to the January 6 insurrection. Constantly stressed by the safety of my surroundings and the turbulent political climate, I made the decision to apply for the US State Department Gilman Fellowship and move to Australia.

I have since graduated and have been living here for almost five months. In my first week here, a new Prime Minister was elected. Not only did everyone have a chance to vote, but there were no protests or even a two-party system. The Uvalde shooting happened, and everyone at my workplace brought me flowers, crying that they couldn’t imagine a country where students would have active shooting practice. I then watched from abroad deer being kicked out of a country where I have free universal health care and virtually zero prescription drug costs.

People also read…

Many people reading this, I’m sure, would reject these things because they live in a “socialist” country or a country with an incredibly high tax rate. However, if you really care about it, it is the result of a country where people value the good of the community more than political gain. This is what our country could look like if we stopped saying “Trump this” or “Biden that” in every news article.

In this election season, I urge you not to vote for the candidate, but to vote for the community. Who offers a world in which you don’t have to choose between paying for insulin or paying for dinner? Who offers a world where you don’t have to send your child to school with a bulletproof backpack? Who offers a world where you don’t have to think about how much money you have in your bank account before calling an ambulance? If you read these questions and immediately attribute them to a political party before even thinking about the answer, you are not an educated voter, you are a victim of political propaganda.

Vote by mail

Calls to people aged 65 and over indicate that very few citizens are aware of the requirements for obtaining a vote by mail (BBM).

Efforts by the Texas secretary of state and lieutenant governor to educate seniors have been confusing and piecemeal. These efforts include envelopes that look like spam, using campaign contractors to send BBM announcement letters to citizens, and banning election officials from mailing ballots to senior voters without their request to do so.

Unless you know how to apply for BBM, be aware that the forms require two pieces of ID on the form and return envelope, and be aware that it takes 10 days to two weeks to process in the mail. It is much safer to register in person.

We deserve to trust BBM. Unfortunately, this is not the case for elections in Texas.

RIP, judge

Besides being a brilliant legal mind, Ken Starr was a truly selfless individual. In 2019, Judge Starr was ordained so he could marry my wife Robin and me. He and his wonderful wife, Alice, were involved in many aspects of our wedding planning, and Judge Starr hosted a ceremony we will never forget. Rest in peace, judge.

About Michael C. Lovelace

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