Why I failed to vote

Voting is both highly personally while being very public. How do you make your choice before casting the big vote?
Opinion

Ohhhh….I could make up some excuse as to why I failed to vote such as, I was out of the State on a family emergency – or maybe I was unable to get to the voting station due to a broken leg or another some such lie. But the truth is…. I was without information.

My Democratic Right is that I have choices – and one of these choices is to seek information before I act.

The candidates that I was expected to vote for gave me no information at all. They did not approach me and discuss their morals, intentions or values to improve my life or benefit my community. They did not tell me of their agendas for the following years or even hold public meetings so that we could ask them questions regarding their plans. All I ever saw of them was expensively produced brochures through my letter box and smiling faces in smart suits above a list of unenforceable promises on billboards scattered around the district. I never got to know any of the candidates, and that is my loss and well as theirs.

I hold my choices and therefore my voting right as ‘sacrosanct’ and will never mindlessly ‘tick any box’ that may give someone power to influence my life without gaining the necessary information.

As I look around the Democratic World, I see people mindlessly voting for ‘power players’ with destructive agendas. This says to me that fear and bureaucratic threats have overtaken our democracies, requiring people just to turn up and vote without seeking information as to the calibre of whose ‘box’ they tick.   That doesn’t sound much like democracy to me.

 As long as I live in Australia, I will value and respect my freedom and democratic right to information and will never mindlessly vote for anyone who does not.

Do you agree with what Samantha has to say?  What are your views on voting?  We would love to read what you have to say in the comments below.

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  1. Bob  

    I agree with that also our voting system is not democratic and their is no person or party worth voting for, there all full of BS.

  2. Graham  

    I feel sorry for you. There is plenty of information for you to make an informed choice. All you have to do is look for it. By not voting, you get the Govt. you have. I hope you’re not one of those bleating persons who rail against the incumbent Govt.

    • Jayjen  

      I agree. Information about elections or any other subject or topic is there if you look for it. It doesn’t come to you. You seek it.

  3. Susan Bell  

    If you do not vote you have no right to complain about governments. We have one of the best electoral practices. When people become new citizens it is made clear that they must obey the law and they have to vote.
    Old Greek word IDIOT means he who does not vote.

  4. Hilton KING  

    I understand what Samantha is saying, but I’m frankly surprised that there were no Public Meetings in her electorate. I am President of Port Macquarie’s Residents Action Network, which organized two very successful ”Meet the Candidates” free events to packed houses in the lead-up to our last Federal Election, and such events should be compulsory in every electorate. By the way, our system in Australia does not make it compulsory for people to vote, but only fines people if they don’t TURN UP to vote. If a person attends has his or her name crossed off the Roll, and then puts a blank ballot paper in the Ballot Box, it will simply count as an ”Informal” vote, and no fine will be imposed. That to me is a much more democratic system than what we’ve just witnessed in the U.S.A.!

  5. Diana  

    Malcolm Turnbull (or Trumball as he is apparently known in certain circles) gave us a marathon lead up time to the election time last year, so much so that we were exhausted at the end of it. If someone didn’t know what politicians were advocating, then they are obviously a bit thick. There was no lack of information. Pollies were grovelling on the streets and in community halls. They were – via Australia Post – sticking information through letter boxes for weeks up to the election. The internet was full of it – all parties had their policies on their website, FB and Twitter were overloaded. There were many opportunities for communities to go and listen to their candidates, most halls hosted Q & A nights for people to attend. People all over the world have and are DYING for the right to vote which we are privileged to have and which some people denigrate. People who refuse to vote or scribble on their voting cards have no right when it comes to cursing the current government. BTW, scribbling on one’s voting card means that their vote is given to the pollie who is currently in power in their electorate.Likewise the votes of people who write references to “rats arses” on their card.

  6. Khris  

    Graham says all you have to do is look for the info for the parties….My response is WHY should I have to look for it!
    You want me to vote it should be readily and EASILY available to anyone and everyone!

    As Bob said: They are all full of BS! Liar is the first thing that comes to mind of a pollie!

  7. Robin Henry  

    Last Federal election I voted for a candidate in a party I no longer respect or support. She was the least unappealing of several candidates who were from what I call single issue parties and nutter parties. Their manifestos were short on ideas and hardly going to help Australia.

    The Federal election beforehand I declined to vote because I felt I couldn’t support any of the candidates. I decided I’d just cop the $110 fine and wait for another few years.

    Well. my wife gave me a serve – and she was quite right. She reminded me of how many people had fought to have voting rights, especially women and how many countries are run by dictators, fascists and have no say in anything much at all. I felt a tad embarrassed that she had called me out. She told me that she didn’t want to hear a word of complaint from me about whichever party won government as I had not done my duty. I felt admonished and decided that I wouldn’t choose not to vote again.

    Our pseudo-democratic system is, like most things, imperfect. The right thing to do is vote for a candidate whom you think will make an effort to improve it. For better or worse, that’s what I’ll do now.

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