CullmanTimes.com - Cullman, Alabama

Opinion

June 3, 2014

EDITORIAL: Taking charge with a vote

The Democratic and Republican primaries arrive Tuesday morning across the state, with many election officials and candidates fearing a low turnout could be in store for what otherwise should be cause for a great gathering of citizens.

The election process in this nation holds the key to maintaining an effective government for the people. Why? Because government in the United States is the people, not a ruling class or aristocracy who believe they hold special privilege. But that truth only remains as long as citizens go to the polls and vote for candidates they believe will best uphold the principles of this country.

Too often we hear of low voter turnouts on election days. If that trend continues, citizens will find they have less knowledge of who serves their needs. And without that knowledge power can be misused.

Voting only takes a few minutes of time. But taking time to cast your votes brings a great deal of satisfaction, knowing that you contributed to shaping government.

Candidates spend a great deal of time and money attempting to win public confidence and votes. In a sense, they are begging you to pay attention to what they have to say. Take the invitation and pay attention. Ask questions. Demand answers. Participate in public meetings when you are able and learn how your community, state and nation are impacted by those you elect to office.

Political officeholders will react to strong public opinion on just about any issue. That’s what we should expect. But shaping the effectiveness of a public servant starts on election day. A vote sends a clear message to office seekers that while you are entrusting them with confidence, you are also following their work ethic and integrity.

Enjoy the election process Tuesday. This is your right, your government and your time to set the tone of leadership in your community and state.

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