Monday, February 26, 2007

social dimension of a vote

As usual, of the occasion of a forthcoming election, it is customary to hear certain common observations about the significance of voters and their votes. Voting is both a democratic privilege and a civic duty. A vote is not only precious but also sacred. To vote is a moral duty and a civic commitment. All of these remarks and others the like, are certainly true.

It might be good to add another complementary view on the distinct implication of a vote. This: every single vote cast has a signal social dimension. This simply means that a vote of one person impacts everybody else. In other words, when someone votes, he or she necessarily implicates all others with his or her vote.

When citizen casts his or her vote for a candidate with integrity and capacity, all others are thereby benefited in the event that the candidate wins. The opposite is also true. When one casts a vote in favor of a lying, cheating and/or stealing candidate, the others are all harmed if the candidate wins the elections.

An elected public official assumes a public office and handles public funds for public service and welfare. If the official is adorned with sound moral values such as honesty and industry, what a big blessing the same is for all his or her constituents. Its opposite constitutes a big curse for the people concerned.

Something the same can be said about those qualified to vote but do not in fact vote for one untenable reason or another. One vote for a good candidate that is not cast is a loss for many others. This is the underlying rationale of the truth that to vote is both a moral duty and a civic commitment.

The social dimension of every single vote should be duly disseminated and understood as a distinct service to a democratic society whereof every voter is a constituent member. This is precisely the reason why every voter should vote, why the voter should vote for right candidate, why the voter should see to it that his or her vote is counted—and why cheaters in election have no place in a decent society.

Selling one’s vote is a threefold evil. One, the voter becomes a traitor to society. Two, the elections become a farce. Three, the vote undermines the democratic processes. This is evil as its best!

26 February 2007