In the Blog
A Candidate Worth Voting For, Even If You Can’t Vote
I realize that Shameless is Canadian and very, very few of us (cough) can vote in Tuesday’s election. Having said that, that doesn’t mean that some of us (um, me?) aren’t completely and totally obsessed with it, much like our American friends. Yesterday I broke down and cried like a baby in the final ten minutes of Obama’s Closing Argument speech (he said the word “Gay” in a positive way), laughed my ass off during Obama’s Jon Stewart appearance last night (he made a joke about how sharing toys in kindergarten made him socialist), and am frantically putting together an election party (the Obama family chilli recipe!)
I’ve been tear-jerkingly, curse-word swearingly, irrationally emotionally invested in this election for well over a year now, and in the final week I’m really starting to panic. It’s foolish to believe that this election just effects Americans and not the entire world, and I think so many of us outside of the US watch in fear that, despite how well everything is going, something might go terribly wrong.
That’s why, over the next week, I propose a daily reminder to vote. Shameless is indeed Canadian, but it turns out, if my handy Google Analytics tool is correct, more than half of you out there are reading us from the US, and I’m also sure many of you are old enough to vote. Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I think you’ll forget or don’t care, it’s more that I think you’ll help spread the word.
But also, there’s this:
Young voters will be vital in this election and they just happen to be notoriously apathetic. I don’t blame young voters, given that the system so often strives to disclude and ignore them, but I think for the first time in a long time there’s a candidate worth voting for.
In the past many other countries have been less than passionately interested in American politics, watching things happen like a stage play and never actually believing that it effected us all that much. I think it’s abundantly clear, with the war and the economy and a woman’s right to choose under serious threat, that that is simply not the case anymore. We have a responsibility to ensure that Barack Obama is elected, and that every voter who agrees gets out and votes on Tuesday.
The beauty of the internet is that I can let our American friends know how passionately we support his victory, and how much we want to help in any way we can.
Yes, we can argue and debate our positions passionately, but all of us must summon the strength and grace to bridge our differences and unite in common effort — black, white, Latino, Asian, Native American; Democrat, Republican; young, old; rich, poor, gay, straight; disabled or not. All of us have to come together…. in this election, we cannot afford the same political games and tactics that are being used to pit us against one another, to make us afraid of one another. The stakes are too high to divide us by class and region and background; by who we are or what we believe. Because, despite what our opponents may claim, there are no real or fake parts of this country. There is no city or town that is more pro-America than anywhere else. -Barack Obama, Canton Memorial Civic Centre, Canton, Ohio 1:17 P.M. EDT, Monday, October 27, 2008.