Why I Vote

Partnering with HeadCount, a non-partisan voter participation organization, Penguin Random House has started an initiative encouraging people to register to vote, called:


And in honor of that, I’m here to tell you…drumroll…WHY I VOTE! (You’re surprised, right? I’m sure you are.)

So, why do I?

Well, because OF COURSE I DO!

Except, it’s more complex than that, isn’t it? Do you vote because you should? Because someone tells you to? Or better, why don’t you vote? Because it’s inconvenient? Because you don’t know how/where/who for?

Because you think your one teeny, tiny, lonely, little vote won’t matter?

I get that feeling, I really do. Especially in today’s…I’ll call it, climate…it’s hard to feel like your one small voice is anything but, well, small. The magnitude of today’s issues feel pretty freaking insurmountable at times. The water’s swift and maybe rising and you’re just one ant, right? What’s your one little ant voice supposed to do?



Those are ants. One ant alone in the flood waters? Yeah, not a lot of luck. But thousands of them? Well, they made a freaking road atop the water.

You’ve probably heard this before. About how ants make floating roads and islands out of masses of their own bodies?? Maybe. (Either way, how cool is that?) Or…about how one vote plus one vote plus one vote to the nth power adds up to whole heck of a lot of votes? You probably have. Because it’s true.

And because it works in reverse, too. For every person who says “I don’t think my vote matters” there are probably a few thousand others saying the exact same thing. And your one little non-vote plus their non-vote plus the next person’s non-vote, well… You get the idea.

So why do vote, personally?

Well, I vote because I matter. Because my family matters. Because you matter. Because the environment, the future, the world, people I have never and probably will never meet…it all matters.

I vote because the separation of “politics” and “life” is a myth. Because there is no part of your life or my life or some future person’s life that isn’t affected, in some way, big or small, by the decisions made by politicians.

The environment? Politics. Your rights? Politics. Your education? Politics. Your access to land? Politics. The food you eat, clothes you buy, how and where you travel? Politics. 

At some point, “politics” has touched everything in your life. Because “politics,” the laws and decisions made by people in office shape the very construct of our society. And, barring you running for office yourself, the first and most essential way you affect what decisions are made, and how those decisions are made, is by voting.

So, of course I vote. This is my life, my kid’s life. It’s your life. And it matters.

REGISTER TO VOTE TODAY!! Then get five friends to register, then tell them to get five more friends to register, then if they get five of their friends, and their friends after that? Pretty soon, you’ll have an ant raft floating majestically (okay, creepily) across the water.

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