Know there's lots of discussion over voting, so I wanted to let everyone know I already voted. It was simple and relatively easy. If I did it; you can too.
This year was different than previous ones. (You can say that again.) I knew I would not be #1 in line at my local polling place. (Something I will kind of miss; along with the nice ladies who man the station at 6 AM.) Instead of getting a sample of what the ballot would look like; I got an actual ballot.
The first thing I did was READ THE INSTRUCTIONS. I know a lot of us don't like to do that, but...we've got to make exceptions. Read the directions and follow the instructions.
I knew who I was going to vote for before I got my ballot. I've done my due diligence. I've done my research. I hope you do to; your vote is too important to throw away without any thought. (And believe me I've done A LOT of thought when it comes to who was going to get my vote this year. I'm not just talking about the presidential election; you need to think about EVERY candidate you’re going to vote. Do your research!) I'm not going to tell you WHO I voted for, but if you've read anything I've written over the past 8 or so years you have a pretty good idea of what box I ticked off and that I believe in casting your vote for the person who will not only best represent me, but act in the best interests of the country and mankind.)
Then I grabbed a pen (although I could have grabbed a #2 pencil) and filled in the little circles next to my choice. (Use blue or black pen...I know I would have liked to have used purple, but...) It was just like being back in school doing standardized testing. (See, it does come in handy). I selected my candidates and answered my state questions. These were on the other side of the page. Be sure to check both sides to make sure you have filled out everything completely. You want all your thoughts/opinions to be heard. Fill out everything! Fill it all out carefully! Neatness counts. (You can go back to being a slob, like me, after you've filled out your little circles.)
Once I filled everything out, I put the ballot in the certification envelope. Yes, this is where it gets tricky because there are two envelopes. The certification envelope was envelope #1. I signed it. (With my somewhat messy signature...hey, that's the way I roll.) I sealed it.
Then I placed the ballot, which was in the certification envelope in the RETURN envelope. (Again I know this can be a little tricky which is why you need to FOLLOW the instructions. Just do it this time...you can go back to being reckless after you've cast your vote.) In my case, I did not need to put postage on the envelope. (This varies by state.)
Of course I decided NOT to mail in my ballot. Although I DO trust in our postal service (even though I've had some issues with our delivery person), there just happened to be a drop box in my town. A drop box that is monitored.
All I had to do was drive down to the center of town where the box currently resides (right in front of the police station) and drop in my ballot. (Yes, I could have walked, but my husband wanted to drop off his ballot too and he's NOT the walker I am.) And that was that. I may not have gotten an "I Voted" sticker (which I don't think I have ever gotten), but I did get the satisfaction of knowing that I've done my civic duty. That I have done what I needed to do to make my voice heard.
The whole process took less than 10 minutes. It might have even been easier than what I would have normally have done. (Although as I said, I do miss my poll workers who have come to expect me coming in the gym door at 5:58 in the morning.)
Make sure YOUR voice is heard this year. When you get your ballot, follow the directions and fill it out. Democracy depends on us all.