There are now 23 days remaining until official Election Day — yes, we are counting — and those 3-plus weeks can’t pass quickly enough. With every day there seems to be another divisive moment in this election process, and, with each headline and counterheadline and claim and counterclaim, we feel our breakfast creeping up our throat. You know what that means.
We have been urgent and vigilant in prior weeks to encourage you to take this election seriously — perhaps more seriously than any before it — and to be sure that you vote, vote correctly (by early or mail/absentee process that are underway) and are heard. It’s your democratic right to do so but also, we remind you, your moral responsibility.
This week will be the deadline to register to vote in Virginia. If you haven’t registered — and certainly then you haven’t voted — we implore you to register so your voice may be heard, your feelings may be counted and democracy can work once again. We don’t want COVID-19 to claim another victim, and failure to vote is a fatal symptom.
We heard recently about efforts in some school districts in which students are not back in classrooms where government teachers are taking up their unofficial roles of election “whips” and getting students registered.
Those students can’t be bused to the registrar’s office to sign up or, historically in some cases, cast their first votes as newly minted 18-year-olds. We always appreciated how schools reinforced democracy and government and gave students the foothold to embrace them. So we applaud those teachers who have found new ways to “transport” a teenager into adulthood.
Likewise, if you are the parent, guardian or friend of someone who will be 18 by Nov. 3, we ask you to mentor that teen and share the link https://www.elections.virginia.gov/registration/how-to-register/ and get that person registered. You even can register and vote all in one trek to the registrar’s office.
We also were reminded recently if you already are registered, have voted previously and want to vote early you don’t need any form of identification at the registrar’s office. You just have to attest to your identity. No, this could not be easier or more convenient.
We only wish voting gave everyone a door prize such as virtual ear muffs and blinders to block out the sights and sounds of the election season. Because it really has become nauseating. Hence our jeopardized breakfast.
That noise serves no purpose but to irritate, because nothing will change anyone’s mind about the presidential election, to be sure. Can you name someone undecided? No, we didn’t think so.
You may have different perspectives of the Warner-Gade Senate race or the Good-Webb matchup in the 5th Congressional District. If you live in Danville, you may not know which person you want to add to City Council. You have candidate forums and debates coming to help with that process on the local level.
Otherwise, we count down the hours until Nov. 4 like the clock at the outside of “60 Minutes” or the hourglass on “Days of Our Lives.” They move slowly but surely, and we mark them with great if perhaps gullible hope of peace and harmony in the future, when problems can be addressed and perhaps solved without the torrent of insults and disparagements that now attach to them like leeches.
We found most curious this week a comment from Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah): “Democracy isn’t the objective; liberty, peace, and prosperity are. We want the human condition to flourish. Rank democracy can thwart that.”
Well, Sen. Lee, we disagree. Voting is “rank democracy,” and we sort of think it’s the foundation of everything.