By the time you read this, another local election will have come and gone. Americans often wonder whether their vote really makes a difference. Whether it has the impact we’d like isn’t as important as fulfilling our duty as participants in the democratic process. It boils down to this: If you don’t vote for your public officials, you haven’t earned the right to criticize them.
That said, in no other arena does your vote make more immediate impact than at the local level. Your mayor and city council are responsible for the streets you traverse, the utilities that power your home, and the services your family will need in an emergency. Your school board is charged with guiding the educational development of the generation that will soon be calling the shots.
It’s too late to vote this time around. Be sure to exercise your right next year. —DR