According to dictionary.com, a democracy is defined as a “government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.” The related words that follow this term are “justice, freedom, equality, etc.,” which are the things we hold dear as American people. It is “a system of the people run by the people for the people.”
If we the people do not show up to vote, our democracy is not run for the people it is governing. President Franklin D. Roosevelt said it best when he said, “Nobody will ever deprive the American people of the right to vote except the American people themselves and the only way they could do this is by not voting.” By choosing not to vote, we are not exercising our freedom to do so.
By continuing to vote, we secure our unalienable rights of Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness. These are the rights of all American citizens, and it is ours, as the people, to keep the government from becoming destructive. When it does, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it. By voting, we can alter the government in our favor- if we do not agree with the way it is governing its people. If we do not vote, we allow those in power to do what they want instead of what is best for the American people.
Louis L'Amour, an American author, once explained “to make democracy work, we must be a nation of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.” We the People must not become comfortable with being observers. We must actively seek to better ourselves and our country by participating. We need to continue to hold our elected officials accountable and vote them out whenever they do not have the people’s best interest at heart.
By voting, we are exercising the first amendment by expressing our opinions on how the country should be run and who should be representing us as the American people. Voting and being an active participant in the government is the essence of democracy and is vital to a citizen’s self-worth within a democracy. If you do not vote, you do not believe that your opinion matters nor should your voice be heard. To quote poet Robert Frost, “Think isn’t agreeing or disagreeing. That's voting.” You can publicly share your opinion, but if you do not vote, your thoughts will not be heard.
There is an average of 45% voter turnout for elections. How can less than half of the country represent what the whole country wants? Invest in your future and the future of this country. Go out and vote because all of our freedoms depend on it.