The Biggest Loser on Election Day

Monday, 12 Nov 2012 09:26 AM

By Jon Friedman

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The biggest loser on Election Day was not Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan — or that new scapegoat and victim of circumstances: The White Man. It was the American Voter himself or herself, regardless of who he or she actually voted for. We all lost.
 
That's because some civic-minded Americans had to spend hours standing in line to wait and cast their votes in the 2012 presidential election. That's ridiculous! It's much worse than that but I'll keep my language clean here.
 
How the heck (see, I'm still keeping it clean, down the line) can we ask our citizens to do that? Some folks supposedly were told that they would have to wait in line for something like six hours. It's inhumane.
 
It also shows that America has a long way to go to become a unified nation. We talk about the desire to be one nation and then we tell some would-be voters that they are actually have-nots, when it comes to fulfilling their American duty every four years. It's just not fair. It has to stop. Right now, too.
 
President Barack Obama, only moments after Gov. Romney conceded to him, stood before a cheering throng in Chicago and said at the start of his acceptance speech, "We've got to fix that." No matter how you feel about Obama, he got that absolutely right.
 
We sure do. It's a disgrace that this is the best that we can do for so many people. 
 
Casting a vote is not only a very important personal statement; it's a heck of a lot of fun to do so. I find it to be a very satisfying civic experience. I feel empowered. I feel proud to be an American citizen as well.
 
We all secretly get a little kick out of voting, don't we? It's why we all love to watch the footage of the two presidential candidates bounding out of their respective hometown voting installations and giving a thumbs-up sign to the inevitable flock of waiting, shivering television reporters. 
 
When people vote, they feel like winners. It's a wonderful rite of passage. It is part of what makes America a strong nation — and a great nation. Let's not take it for granted, please.
 
Jon Friedman writes the Media Web column for MarketWatch.com. Click here to read his latest column. He is also the author of "Forget About Today: Bob Dylan's Genius for (Re)invention, Shunning the Naysayers and Creating a Personal Revolution," which is now available. Read more reports from Jon Friedman — Click Here Now.
 

 
 

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