Vote Saturday, it’s your duty

Once again, the polls will open Saturday as Louisiana citizens are welcome to cast their votes for local and state representation. Democracy trudges forward.

Although this year’s gubernatorial primary lacks a headlining race, the ballot carries with it significance in parish presidency races, Legislature representatives and high-ranking state seats.

Election time is also connected to the lectures of media imploring the citizens to vote. It’s a time-tested tradition, and it’s warranted.

For those of you who didn’t vote early, sacrifice some time and cast a ballot because, above all else, it’s the most significant right an American possesses.

Sure, democracy has its pitfalls. It turns human beings against one another in an effort to shout the loudest. It creates special interest groups who can wine and dine our lawmakers in attempt to get a statutory favor. In a lot of cases, it rewards debauchery and the best-packaged clandestine motives over the meek with a mind for the job but abhorrence for the process.

But democracy also presents American citizens an opportunity that too much of humankind does not: We have the ultimate power to revoke the power.

Please don’t mistake this for a rant against politicians. Instead, it’s a plea to understand and act on the most valuable gift our nation has ever received, even more so than the purchase of the Louisiana territory.

We’re not your parents, nor will we beat down your door if you choose not to vote. Ultimately, it’s your decision, your right.

And for much as we like to urge you to cast a ballot, it may be too late to do so with a fully formed opinion.

Voting is not a one-day event. It’s a year-round and ever-present duty. It’s more than just your right; it’s our right. The voice of a few, even if it speaks the truth, will be drowned out by the voice of many, even if it is ill informed or nefarious.

So we’ll finish this lecture by not only asking you to show up to the polls on Saturday; we’ll also beg you to show up to the polls every day.

Absorb all of the information you can throughout the year. In a democracy, information and action are the only legal ways to overthrow your government.

That may seem a little harsh and out of place, but it was the ultimate vision of the men who sacrificed, and continue to sacrifice, their lives in the sake of democracy, our right to freedom.