I voted today. I hope you do, too.

I’m not going to tell you who to vote for. I’m not going to tell you who not to vote for. Not even in that artificially earnest way that asks you to consider your values or uses keywords tied to real or perceived or prognosticated misdeeds of the candidates meant to either motivate or scare you into casting a ballot one way or the other. I won’t play the shame card, leveling, subtly or otherwise, the charge that your vote, if you spend it on the wrong man or woman, will allow evil of this stripe or that to reign. Even if I tried any or all of those things, I probably wouldn’t change your mind anyway.

Neither am I going to try to guilt you into voting by noting that it’s your “civic duty” that “brave men and women fought and died” for you to have — although both are true, purely objectively. I’m not going to tell you that if you don’t vote you “lose the right to criticize the government” or that you’re “setting a bad example” for future generations — whether they share your blood or not. I’m not going to tell you the “future of the republic” depends on your pulling a lever, or filling in a circle, or punching a chad, because that’s not true, either, purely objectively. The republic remains intact, even though a lot of people have not voted since 1788.

In fact, I’m not going to tell you anything. Or ask you anything. Or try to get you to really think about anything.

I’m just going to say, I voted today. And I hope you do, too.

(Huh. Maybe this does have to do with better communication. Sometimes, the most effective message isn’t really messaged at all. It’s just spoken, plainly, hopefully, with no direct or indirect attempt to sway through words and phrases meant to elicit emotion and reaction. Sometimes, even in my line of work, simple and straightforward is more effective than the most artfully constructed sales pitch.)



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