Get Off Your A_s and Register to VOTE!

Sun. February 3, 2008 12:00 AM
by Bill Pritchard

I wonder if you will allow me a moment to get up on my soap box (The term originates from when speakers would stand on a wooden box meant for holding soap. The term is also used metaphorically to describe a person engaging in often flamboyant impromptu or unofficial public speaking, as in the phrase "Get off of your soapbox.") for a moment and remind you that this year we will be voting for, among other things, a new President.

If you've not Registered to vote what are you waiting for? Get off you're ass and do it NOW! Honestly, we all need to step up to the plate and make our impact. Whether you are Republican or Democrat, it is your responsibility and opportunity to Make A Difference right where you are.

In Chicago, Registration is open year round except, the 27-day period just prior to an election. Your last day to be able to vote in the general election (That's the one for the President) is October 7, 2008. The election itself takes place on my Mom's birthday, November 4th . In the state of Illinois there is early voting available starting October 14th and ending October 30th.

Here in Illinois you can Register at the County Clerk's office, Board of Election's office, City and village offices, Township offices, and Precincts. Some schools, public libraries, labor groups, civic groups, corporations and military recruitment offices also provide voter registration.

You will need : two forms of identification with one showing your current residence address. If you Register by mail, you must vote in person the first time you vote.

Personally, I am no fan of our current President. He seems to be a nice enough person, but somewhat of a nimrod when it comes to foreign and domestic policy. I can say that with a great deal of conviction because I have been involved in Mr. Bush's administration since before he was President. I voted.

So often, I hear people complain and gripe about the way they disagree with things and yet they don't get involved and speak up where it counts. If you don't know who your elected officials are then do a search on the internet. Here in Chicago you can enter your address and it will bring up your Representatives, Senators, Attorney General, Comptroller, Governor, Lt. Governor, and Secretary of State. It gives you their contact information including their phone numbers and email address.

Try giving them a call . Write them a note, email them, or fax them! THAT is what they are in office for. If you're mad about how much gasoline costs, write your Senator. Perhaps you are overwhelmed with property taxes. Well, do something about it! The time has come were we need to rise to the call of "active citizen and let our concerns be heard.

Now, if you are eighteen or older you can vote. ( Note : If you are going to be 18 on the day of the election, you are able to Register ahead of time) We can not let this election go by. We as LGBT voters have a great occasion to let our feeling be known. You can bet that there are a lot of people in this country of ours that would like to see us all moved to an island somewhere. Our action in the voting booth prevents that prejudice!

Don't delay, Register today!