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Voting – a legal exercise

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Inside the mind of a non-voter resides utter confusion, sometimes malice and even hatred of an uncertain kind.

This in most circumstances is either the result of personal failures or under achievement.

The non-voter lacks the ability to see the good in at least one of three of his own compatriots who are willing to offer their services to the State, or it may be just a mere attitude of recklessness on the part of the non-voter about the Governance of one’s society which informs his actions.{{more}}

The irony though is that the non-voter always knows it all. He is a man who lives in an ideal world and enjoys questioning the apparent. The non-voter sees reality through a pair of spectacles which were made by him to appreciate only a vision which fits his personal untested views for the most part. He further removes himself from the logical analysis of the issues and side-tracks into an over emphasizing of negatives in an aim to merely sound critical. A worst case scenario though is a non-voter who may have attempted to achieve political selection and at the time preached the language of “trust me” and today preaches the language of “don’t trust them”. Oh what a scar on logic!

Only true revolutionary

Lastly, the non-voter always sees himself or herself as the only true revolutionary, and a stickler for change, yet it is so apparent that their lives may fail in most instances to reflect such.

History informs us that issues of Class, Race and Religion were the major factors which determined whether or not an individual was able to participate in the election process, be it as a prospective candidate or as a citizen within the electorate.

History has passed into time, but the question remains: How serious are our citizens in respecting their right to vote? This must be answered in the context that such a right was paid for with the blood and anguish of many who fought long before our times. This right finds prominent expression in the literature of the “Declaration of the Rights of Man” from as early as the French Revolution, stating as follows:

“Law is the expression of the general will. All citizens have the right to take part personally or through their representatives in its formation…..”

If those who have sacrificed their lives in major struggles of the past were to be informed that all that they fought for would be reduced to persons refraining from exercising such rights secured by their efforts, they may wish that they had the ability to turn back the hands of time.

To vote, or not to vote?

Questioning whether “To vote or not to vote?” has to be equated with being of the same attitude as the slave who wonders “To be free or not to be free?” In fact, to speak the language of emancipation and freedom from a side of the mouth, yet suggest the question “To vote or not to vote” is to make mockery of the scriptures, that a “A fountain cannot bring forth bitter and sweet water at the same time”.

The right to vote as seen within the context of a Post-Slavery West Indian Society must at all times be viewed as an addition to the rights of freemen, and a definite forerunner to the political Independence of our nation states.

As citizens of a Blessed nation in an era of “people enlightenment,” it is clear that we have had the honor of having a revolution in education brought to our door steps. Whether or not one chooses to vote , it amounts to an exercise of your legal right, since implicit in the right to vote is the right not to vote. Hence, an eligible voter actually exercises this right in a negative sense when he stays at home on Election Day.

Be a part of the next selection process. Exercise your legal right to vote!

• Saboto Caesar is a 1999 Island Scholar, Barrister and attorney-at-Law, Crown Counsel in the Office of the DPP and Community Worker.

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