Suffrage - 05/05/14
Suffrage. We all have this right. Tomorrow is election day and I hope you'll join me in exercising it.
There are many people, women and men, who weren't fortunate enough to be born in a free country where voting is a right, not a privilege. Take for example, the United Arab Emirates which still has limited voting for men and women. Saudi Arabia doesn't let women vote at all, but is promising inclusion in 2015. Brunei doesn't let men or women vote and Vatican City lets only some men vote, but no women.
I checked the voting registration numbers for Tennessee. We have a population of nearly 6.5 million people, yet only half of our citizens are registered to vote. Granted some of those are kids and aren't eligible yet. The point is when it comes to voting; we can, so we should.
In November 2012, the last year for which voting stats are available, only 59% of voters showed up to have their say.
Our state, Tennessee, actually played a pivotal role in gaining this right for women. In 1919, Congress submitted the 19th Amendment to the states for ratification. This would finally give women the right to vote in the U.S. It was Tennessee that cast the final vote needed to add this amendment to our Constitution.
Whether, man or woman, those before us fought hard so we'd be able to have our say. If you need any further motivation to go to the polls tomorrow, read my previous blog: Silly Billy-- for a peek at how some of our legislators spend our money and their time. Here's the link.
Surely, we can do better.