On Tuesday May 14, Vote or Don't Complain

If you've decided not to vote in Tuesday's provincial election because you think, "they're all the same", or are turned off by the political process or the actions of politicians, the only thing you've done is to ensure that the status quo remains.

Once you decide not to vote, you become invisible, since the only people that those with political power care about are those who cast a vote. By giving up your vote you've guaranteed that the candidates will in fact remain "all the same" and that the political process will carry on as it always has.

If you've ever thought that the government should be doing or not doing something, and you have chosen not to vote, you've given up your one big chance to say something about who the government will be and what they will do. If you've opted out of your opportunity to say who will form government, you really shouldn't complain if people who you disagree with are elected and are doing things you think are wrong.

You may think your one tiny little vote won't matter and doesn't count. If you were the only person who had ever thought to not vote because of that, it would surely be true. But when you and 1.5 million others in BC opt out of voting -- when barely half of BC's eligible voters cast ballots, and only 1 out of 3 younger voters do so, those lost votes really would count and could matter quite a bit. They could change everything.

When huge sections of the population don't bother to vote, that tells politicians that a lot of people don't really care what they do about the economy, the environment, education and all the other things the government can effect. That's a dangerous thing to tell them and erodes our democracy.

So do your duty and take a few minutes to vote in Tuesday's provincial election. Or don't complain about the government if you didn't bother.

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