I try to combine my errand-type car trips. It’s one of my little ways of trying to help save the planet. And I like to be, let’s say, economical.
Anyway, coming back from stops at River Oaks in Cal City last weekend, I decided to stop at the Cal City library. The library has a good selection of DVDs and I didn’t have much going on last Saturday night ... we poor, old retired guys.
As I pulled into the library parking lot, I noticed it was pretty filled and there were a lot of people bustling about; not just the normal in and out of the building traffic.
As I walked toward the entrance, it soon became apparent what was up. Early voting. And as on Election Day, folks were outside the polling place passing out political literature and information. And people were being asked to sign petitions for local folks so their names can appear on the ballot for next year’s municipal primary election in February.
The librarian told me later there had been a lot of people taking advantage of the early voting option we have in Illinois.
Democracy in action.
Next Tuesday is the big day. Luckily, since Illinois and Indiana seem fairly safe states for Obama and Romney, respectively, we haven’t seen as many of the harsh, negative ads for the presidency as have been seen in the “swing” states." My neighbor’s son came up from Florida a few weeks ago. Of course he wanted to visit his mom, but he also said he came up to get a break from the avalanche of negative advertising that has been inundating that state for a long time.
This election cycle seems to have a sharper edge than it did four years ago. There is a ton of money involved and semi-secret PACs stoking a lot of the negativity that tends to polarize a pretty polarized population. That’s too bad because our problems can’t be worked out with half the country constantly thinking the other half of the country is always wrong.
In Calumet City and the south suburbs, we also have the issue with our congressman, Jesse Jackson Jr. It’s hard not to sympathize with someone who has some real medical issues but it’s hard to basically not be represented in the Congress of the United States where our laws are made. And his absence, and therefore ours, in the body that makes our laws, is not a desirable situation for us. And this situation has continued since June 10.
However, with all that is undesirable about our political system, the reality is we will elect people to run our state and national governments. And if power does change hands it will be done legally and peacefully. We don’t have to look too far around the world to see that unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.
So if you haven’t already, get out to the polling place and do what so much has been sacrificed for us to be able to do ... vote.
There’s a theory that says something like government should do the things it can do better than the people themselves can, and things that benefit the common good.
I don’t do well at building or repairing of any kind, least of all streets. I’m sure there were several levels of government involved, but thanks to them all for making Sibley Boulevard what boulevards are supposed to be — flat and drivable.
For the uninformed, Sibley Boulevard through Cal City used to have stretches that would make a motocross course proud.
Thanks for reading.