Even if it’s not election time at the area you may be residing in, there is no doubt that voting should always be at the topmost of your priorities if you want to be perceived as a responsible citizen of your town and your state. And really, the maturity of a nation is dependent on how its citizens know how to vote responsibly, after all.
Of course, now comes the most pertinent question: how DO you vote responsibly? Well, while the guidelines governing these are those which you probably already know by now, you may have always second-guessed yourself by the time you arrive at the polling station: “Am I doing the right thing by voting for the right person? How will I know that my actions have positive ramifications at the end of it all?”
Well, if that’s what your line of thinking is before and after you vote, then congratulations, you’re already a responsible voter! Now, with that said, if you really want to perfect the “art” of becoming a truly responsible voter with the power of your mind, then here are some tips below for you to follow!
Decide on issues, NOT the candidate
If there is anything which plagues modern democratic politics nowadays, it’s the rise of the politician as celebrity. And indeed, many pop culture websites have been pointing out the “similarities” between these two worlds, so to speak. And while it is true that the success of one political party is anchored on the charisma and “marketability” of a certain candidate nowadays, those qualities are only part and parcel of what should make that candidate a great leader once he or she gets elected. As it turns out, there should be one thing which you should be judging your candidate on when all things are said and done, and that is their stand on certain “issues” of the day.
Yes, despite all the glitz and glam that is commonly associated with most coverage of politics nowadays, it’s their “platform” which should be the judging meter of whether the candidates willing to go to office are really fit to be there or not. And how would you know whether either of those candidates are really fit to be elected? Well, it’s really dependent upon your preferences, really.
For instance, do you want your town to be the major business hub it could be or do you simply want it to stay the way it is? On the other hand, do you think that the state should continue supporting political refugees or do you think that those money and resources going to the former can be better used elsewhere like building more schools and hospitals and the like? No matter what your answer is to those questions, there really are no wrong answers behind them, and that is the beautiful chaos that democratic politics provide.
So, rather than assessing a candidate’s “personality”, it’d be probably better for you if you can be able to hear what those issues that candidate is standing for. If anything, that’s the closest personal connection you can have with a person you don’t even know!
Know how you will vote
Do you know how you will vote? Well, of course, you do! You just show up at the polling station and vote, right?
Well, if we put the whole thing in a reductive manner, then that’s what “voting” is. However, as a voter, be aware that you also have to do your part on ensuring that you get the smoothest possible experience when it comes to voting. And yes, we did describe voting as “smooth”, because it can really be!
For one, even though you’re sure that you have been voting for the past couple of elections, you still need to CHECK whether your name is still registered in the voters’ ledger or not. One reason for this is because of the fact that when voting systems get to be updated annually, it is always unavoidable that some “data” may be lost in the shuffle. And really, doing so would save you a LOT of stress and headache, believe us!
On the other hand, you also have to know in advance where your polling station is, if only for the fact that it should save you a lot of time trying to locate where you’re supposed to vote when the “actual” election comes around. Of course, there are numerous options you can also use to your advantage in this regard, like signing up for early voting or the like. See, who says democracy doesn’t work?
Bringing a personal “cheat sheet”
Now that you are inside the polling booth, it should be pretty easy sailing from here on, right? Well, what if you suddenly thought twice about the candidates that you will be voting in office? What if you suddenly got a serious case of the nerves and suddenly remembered that what you will be doing bears a HUGE responsibility on the outcome of your town or country’s direction?
Well, for one, that is why bringing a personal “cheat sheet” in the form of a list of names that you will be writing down is still an important part of the whole deal of being a voter. While we’re NOT saying that you can’t change your mind at any moment’s notice, having second thoughts while sitting inside a polling booth adds up to the pressure because… well, there are other voters outside who are probably waiting for you to finish up and come out already!
So, if you want to bypass all the pressure that comes with voting, then having a cheat sheet can be the least you can do in this regard!
So, have you got all of these tips down? Good luck practicing your right on how to vote responsibly!