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Mike Reyes, aka Mr. Controversy, has considered himself a writer ever since he was a child. He wrote for various school publications from about 1995 until 2006, and currently runs both The Bookish Kind and Mr. Controversy, which is an offshoot of the regular column he wrote in High School. He's also authored several short stories such as "The Devil's Comedian", "The Devil v. George W. Bush", and most recently "Wait Until Tomorrow". He resides in New Jersey. Any inquiries for reprinting, writing services, or general contact, should be forwarded to: michaelreyes72@hotmail.com

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Is It OK to Say "We've Won"?

Fourteen days from now an election will take place. Like every cycle before it, the American electorate will be herded to that little curtained off booth, and they’ll be asked to give their opinion. This isn’t just any opinion though. This isn’t an election for the School Board, or a Freeholder, or even that Senator/Representative business. This is a Presidential election, people’s lives are at stake on this one. The Nation hangs in the balance, and a major choice must be made.

Yet, in segments of the media and the public, their minds are already made up. Polls slanting one way or another are taken as signs that, “our guy is winning” or “we’ve got this in the bag”! Electoral maps paint a blue, red, and yellow picture on Pollster.com, that changes as easily as I do my desktop settings. Add figures from early voting, endorsements from different celebrities/former candidates/cabinet members/etc. and it gives the increasing picture that we’re going to win in November.

What people fail to see though is that no, we haven’t won anything yet. In fact, we haven’t even tallied the votes yet. As we all know, those vote tallies are important, and those Electoral Votes are important too. So you win the popular vote…congratulations! Did you win those electoral votes too? Whether we like it or not, the fate of the nation depends on the people serving the Electoral College; and whether you like it or not your vote is not the final decision in the process.

However, your vote still does count. You see, this polling data, it’s all just polls. Polls mean nothing, votes mean everything. Polls are just pledges to vote one candidate or another, ultimately it’s the job of the people to make good on their pledges to vote. The more votes cast, the bigger the margin gets. The bigger the margin, the bigger the victory. The bigger the victory, the less of a chance there is that those electoral votes will be contested, and the more of a chance the American public has of getting its voice heard effectively.

America, I ask of you, go vote on November 4th; or vote now if you’re confident enough to go and do an early voting ballot. Whatever the case, don’t let the polls mislead you into staying home lazily, as you think “We’ve got this in the bag! I don’t have to vote.”. Yes, you do have to vote. Voter turn out needs to be increased, particularly with the youth vote. Do you care about this country? Do you care about your freedom? Do you care about your future, and the future of this country, as well as what’s going on right now? Then turn off the computer, ditch the iPod and the cell phone, and go vote. It’s painless, it’s simple, and it only takes about five minutes. I promise you, you’ll actually feel better once you’ve done it.

No matter the result, no matter the opinions of everyone else, no matter the social pressures you face, you have a vote. That vote is a choice for the direction America should go in. That vote is you saying what you think is important to this country. Don’t just roll over and think you don’t need to vote. While your party might have the upper hand in the polls and the court of public opinion, the other party could really be winning the race. They are tenacious, they are hungry for victory, and they are ready to take the whole bag of marbles, while you’re sitting at home watching The Hills.

They think you’re stupid, that you’re out of touch with reality, that you don’t know what’s going on in the world and your opinion doesn’t mean anything. Well, it doesn’t…unless you go out and vote. A vote is recorded, it’s there in black and white. It says, “Yes, my opinion does matter, so fuck you and your ignorant thinking.” It may not seem like a lot, but a vote can do a lot. So if you’ve responded to surveys, watched the news and formed an opinion, stood at a rally and shouted your heart out, and if you really love it’s country, you’ll save it. And you can do that by voting.

It’s Election 2008 – we haven't won yet. We don't know if we will win. But that's why it's your job to show up to the polls and tell them, "Maybe next time. If you're good."


Chris L. said...

Barack to supporters, "Don't get cocky!" (evoking the Great Han Solo)

"Don't underestimate the capacity of Democrats to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory," Mr. Obama said. "Don't underestimate our ability to screw it up."

He added, "I want everybody running scared. Over the next 18 days, other than your family and your job, I want you to make a decision that there is nothing more important than bringing about this change that we need."

...or in the words of Obama's campaign manager David Plouffe, "Now let's go win this fucking thing." (after getting trounced in NH by Hillary)

Mr. Controversy said...

That would have made a hell of an email from Plouffe. While I am definitely pulling for an Obama/Biden victory, I'd like to think I can inspire all voters with this bit here.

Still, you can tell it's leaned more towards Democrats. Sometimes, I can pull off objective.

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