Do you plan to vote in next week's Primary Election? Did you register to vote? If you answered "yes" to question #1 and "no" to question #2, then forget it. If you didn't register, or update your information (like a new address) if it's no longer correct, then save yourself the frustration of a pointless trip to the polls. Registration closed on April 22, by state law, 29 days before the election. For November's election, that will be Oct. 7.
Next, do you know where your polling place is, because you can't just stop by any one and vote there. The county clerk's office can refresh your memory if you've forgotten.
I vote at the London fire department. Sorry to say, I don't know my precinct. I just know what building to go to. Once inside, I'm again on auto-pilot. I know where my table is. If they ever decide to play musical tables, I guess I'll have to go to each one to see if I'm on their list. A little embarrassing . . .
And, of course, when you do go to vote, you need a valid ID. In London, your poll workers may know you, but I wouldn't count on that being enough. Especially if you get stopped racing to get there and your driver's license is in the top bureau drawer.
Well. All of this just provides background for what I really want to say. And that is, go vote. Not if the weather is warm and sunny (although where I vote, sans AC, that might keep some people away), but even if it's cold and rainy. Government doesn't sit around waiting for optimum voting weather.
Some people think primaries don't warrant their time. "I'll wait for the real show." But think about it a little closer. Matt Bevin won his primary by 85 votes. Not a land-slide victory, especially figuring the low voter turnout.
In Kentucky primaries, Republicans usually have more reason to vote, I guess. But that's not the point. The point is the process. The freedom (and privilege) of voting. The habit, even, of saying, "I have a right, a responsibility, to voice my opinion."
And hopefully, that opinion is based on more than TV and radio ads. Though I know that's asking a lot. But Jefferson and other forefathers knew that a successful democracy would depend on informed voters. Voters who read and listen and use their brains to separate the wheat from the chaff.
Our Kentucky Secretary of State has said that since opening earlier this year, GoVoteKY.com has registered almost 20,000 new voters. The important question is, "Will they vote?" In 2015, only 12.59% of our population voted in the Primary. And who you get to vote for in November depends on who wins the Primary.
Another good website is elect.ky.gov. That's where I found the deadline for registering for the November election. It also provides a detailed schedule of everything from county deadlines for checking voting machines to absentee ballot deadlines. And an FAQ with answers for election-day questions, voter registration, absentee voting, etc.
If you just want to be better informed about all that stuff, visit those sites. They seem to be pretty user-friendly. That coming from a technologically challenged user . . .
I don't care how you vote. Well, okay, yeah, I do, but not enough to have a futile conversation that may jeopardize our relationship.
I do care, though, that you vote. And with an informed mind. I checked the sample ballots on-line (GoVoteKY.com). One for Democrats, one for Republicans, since it's the Primary.
Then I did some more checking on who those people are, what their platforms are, and--here's a thinking question--how realistic and/or concrete are their stated goals?
I hope you will vote on Tuesday. You might stop by the Rotary Pancake Breakfast at the Community Center, to either fortify yourself before tackling the voting machine or to reward yourself afterward. If you do, I'll see you, as I'm working it.
So, no dilly-dallying. Go vote on Tuesday. Polls are open from 6 a.m.-6 p.m. Even if it's a rainy day, there's got to be a let-up some time.
And if you're not registered, get busy and do that so you can vote in November. So far as I'm concerned, if you don't vote, you have no right to complain about the results.