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Voting In America

David Zheng By David Zheng on
Badge: Author | Level: 2 | Other Culture & Society Expertise:

The very essence of America revolves around voting; the ability to choose your own leadership, your own government. Yet, it appears that 58% of America isn’t that quick to jump on the voting bandwagon. Though we try to persuade them to ‘help’ the country by voting and urge them to become active in the political range, it is apparent that not many are getting the message. “Then why not just force them to vote?” Someone may say. Though the inquiry has admirable intentions, it is unwise in many ways.

The first of these reasons is the simple fact that America is a free country. We are free to do what we want, given that we don’t break any laws or infringe on other’s rights. People are free to vote if they want, or neglect it if they don’t. Voting is a right and optional responsibility. It is a gift by our forefathers. Forcing it; just doesn’t and shouldn’t reflect America’s core values: freedom.

Speaking of our forefathers, my second reason is also why they established the Electoral College. They didn’t quite trust the majority of uneducated Americans within the population to choose their own leader. So, the Electoral College was set up to ‘assist’ in the decision making. The same applies for today. Many people don’t keep track of politics and might not understand it. Therefore, it would be better if they did not vote at all, as they may make a misguided choice. For example, in the 2008 Presidential Election, I did not track politics nor did I listen to debates. However, I still supported Obama, simply because his opponent was an elderly Republican. If I really was forced to vote, I would have to make that narrow-minded decision. According to a survey made by ‘about.com’ regarding why people don’t vote, the majority of nonvoters don’t know much about politics or are simply uneducated in a certain degree. As the survey stated, 76% of the surveyed non-voters did not have a college degree. This only backs my previous statement. If people don’t understand politics or simply don’t wish to vote, then they shouldn’t be forced.

My third and final reason for people not being forced to vote is indifference. Some people may not support either candidate for presidency. In the case of the 2008 Democratic Primary, many people may had steadfastly supported Hilary Clinton and lost their candidate when she dropped out. Some people may feel that neither candidate would be best for them or America and so decide not to vote at all rather than vote against themselves. If they were forced to vote, they would have to make a decision that they did not agree with. And that is not what voting is about; therefore, I believe that voting should not be forced in any situation.

Voting is the essence of America. It is a freedom that many Americans pride themselves with come every election. Forcing the people to vote not only takes away the sense of freedom and privilege that America is supposed to grant upon all of its citizens, but it also hints at oppression and makes America look more like a Communist country than anything else. Uneducated or indifferent people would make poor decisions when choosing a leader. As a result, an inferior candidate could get elected as President and throw our country into turmoil. Nothing would be the same. America simply would not be America anymore if we force voting.