If the rock you live under is the same size as mine, you may have recently woken up to learn that roughly 27 percent of the voting population elected the winner of this presidential election.
Twenty-eight percent voted for the other candidate. And only 54.6 percent of the voting-age population actually voted. This appears to be a typical occurrence for our armchair-coaching American voter.
That should rattle everyone’s cage—and not just because of this year’s outcome, but because of every outcome in every election.
The dead squirrel on the kitchen table (how did it get there, who would put something like that on a table, OMG I’m gonna puke), is that when presidents are elected they tend to assume a mandate.
There were 231,566,622 eligible voters in 2016; 54.6 percent actually got out of their armchair and pulled a lever for a candidate. I presume that those left behind were bored, tired, out of their minds, not enthused with who was running, or live under a bigger rock than I do.
Setting the results of this current election aside, consider that President Obama won in 2008 with 61.6 percent of the voting population, receiving 52.9 percent of the total ballots—not of the entire voting population, but of who showed up.
Roughly 30 percent of eligible voters in our country elected Barack Obama.
When I think back to that election, I kept hearing “mandate,” just like the chants coming from the chorus now. Yet, just under one-third of the voting population pulled the lever for the winning candidate. I liked the results in 2008, so it worked for me. But there were lots and lots of people that either didn’t vote or didn’t like the results. Obama won with a clear 7 percent margin over Senator McCain, but I repeat, that doesn’t mean it was a mandate when nearly half of the country did not vote.
This means that when every policy went through, there were millions of armchair coaches sitting in bitterness for eight long years. Some voted and some didn’t, but their confusing rage remained. Because it can be confusing and upsetting to feel like your voice isn’t heard.
When nearly half of our citizens don’t vote, there is a large segment that isn’t even counted as existing.
That should get some “what the hell” juices flowing.
If you don’t vote, you don’t exist as a constituent, other than how much cash goes into the communal coffers. You’re a dollar sign without a voice, the mule for the few million who do vote, a non-involved stick in an out of control current.
Dudes and dudettes, do you get what I’m saying? You’re being used.
Questions for non-existing voters abound. To understand their reasons I poll them when I find them. I’ve heard as many excuses as there are uncast ballots: “I don’t trust the system,” “I don’t follow politics,” “I’ve never voted,” “I don’t like politicians.”
My answer is, I don’t care. I don’t care that you don’t trust the system, follow politics, have never voted, and don’t like politicians. I don’t care that you can’t get your ass out of an armchair to elect someone who may or may not make your life harder or better.
I don’t care because it is you who should care.
When democrats pushed through healthcare and some or many of you fumed, you should have cared enough to vote. When you signed up for that same healthcare system and were able to go to the doctor for the first time without worrying what would happen if you were diagnosed with cancer, you should have cared enough to vote.
With these vote-deficient numbers, I can understand why so many people who voted for McCain in 2008 felt like they were being snookered for eight years. Thirty percent decided for everyone else. This year, 27 percent decided for me and millions of others. I feel snookered and I’ve still got to live through the next four years.
But at least I voted.
At least I can rage with the knowledge that I did something and I’m going to continue to do something. This week I’m focusing on getting those non-existing voters to register. You can do the same here. Signing up takes two big, obnoxious minutes.
If you exist and your voice isn’t in the mix, get busy—another election will soon be on the horizon.
Author: Deb Lecos
Image: YouTube screenshot
Editor: Nicole Cameron