Time to dust off those privileges

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In case you missed it, last week passed, and along with it, the deadline to register to vote in the November general election.

Early voting will start this coming Monday, Oct. 22.

According to the trends, midterm elections run only a little ahead of city and school board elections in terms of voter apathy.

This year, though, that trend may reverse itself, given the level of political animosity on both sides of the political spectrum.

Both groups, GOP and Democrat, have ramped up the rhetoric that the stakes for this election couldn’t be higher, and that you should vote, and bring friends, and make them vote.

Both groups believe that the country has taken a wrong turn, and it’s up to them to right that ship. Democrats hate President Trump and everything he says, does and stands for; Republicans think that the country was circling the drain under liberal leadership.

Both groups have proven to be, at least to my eyes, intractable in their beliefs, and we’ve now been mired in a republic that has essentially ground to a halt, at least as far as the government is concerned.

That’s because neither side is willing to give anymore.

We don’t talk, don’t debate, don’t compromise anymore. It’s has to be one way or the other, and if you disagree, you’ll be labeled as pretty much anything except as a child of God.

This is not the way we should behave; or, as the commercial says, that’s not how this works, not how any of this works. But this is what we’re left with, so now what?

We vote.

The only way, short of an Article 5 Convention, to make any kind of change in the government, is to vote.

Let’s break the trend of voter apathy and get out. I won’t tell you how to vote, but I will admonish you to vote.

That trend, by the way, may be reversing a bit, at least for this year. Madison County Election Administrator Earl Parker said that requests for ballots by mail are up from previous elections.

That’s a good start, but there needs to be more, certainly more that the 17.28 percent from the May runoff, or the 30 percent in the March primary, or 6 percent in the 2017 amendment election.

One-third of the population should not be in charge of the nation’s future. It needs to be all of us, because what happens at that level affects all of us.

And maybe, once all of us become involved, we’ll begin talking more and polarizing less. At least that’s my hope.

Tony Farkas is publisher of the Madisonville Meteor.

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