Popular Thinking in Political Campaigns

Why do we bother voting at all?

October 2003

The average citizen is receiving mixed messages when it comes to voting. One, a civic message, is clear: Voting is a special right in a free society; it is the citizen’s chance to have a voice about decisions made on us. Some even add, with patriotic fervor, that it is a public duty.

A more subtle and perhaps more powerful message is the one that whispers, “Why bother?” This is the message not of the civics textbooks, but of everyday life and of the politics-watching that, for many of us, is the limit of our political involvement.

What is so important about our civic duty? Read on here.  


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