Tuesday, November 07, 2006

A big, giant hypocrite

Or, Noames gets political, sorta, for the first and last time

Elections are a big deal, over here on the dark continent.

You know, what with all the coups and dictators and wars, and stuff.

So when a country manages to pull off the grand ol’ process we like to call “democracy,” there are all sorts of people who made a big deal out of it.

Senegal happens to have a robust democracy. There have been three presidents since independence, peaceful transfers of power, vocal, independent media, and no coups. And when the incumbent lost to long-time opposition member Abdoulaye Wade in 2000, he respected the results and stepped aside.

So when my friends here tell me that they’re not going to bother voting in the elections next February, because all the politicians are the same, and it doesn’t make any difference, I get all preachy.

You have to vote. Democracy is a privilege! If you don’t take your chance to have your say, how will things get better?

And all sorts of obnoxiosity.

Of course, I’ve given the same speeches to friends in America who didn’t bother to vote in 2004.

And so, today’s election day. Surely I filed my absentee ballot months ago, right?

I mean, right?


Not even a little bit.

I’ve been getting reminders to apply for an absentee ballot from the embassy for months. And I’ve ignored all of them.

If I have an excuse, it’s that I was registered to vote in DC, which doesn’t have a voting representative in the House or any Senators.

And that I don’t live in DC any more. Officially I live in Florida. That’s where my mail goes, anyway. But I’m not registered there. And I know nothing about local politics. And that absentee ballots don’t count for anything anyway.

I’ll just go be quiet now.


Blogger Anna said...

I, um, yeah. Hangs head in joint hyprocritical shame...

4:39 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...


I voted today... but 2004... not so much. Same sad story.


11:37 PM  
Blogger jeanne said...

oh dear. oh dear, dear, dear.

12:19 AM  

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