Tuesday is Election Day, when candidates are chosen for public offices. But Tuesday is not the candidates' day. It is your day.
You decide - not them.
Tuesday matters because after that, they often decide, not you.
In a representative democracy, people decide what kind of leadership they want. People are elected to make decisions about how your tax money is spent, and how much of that hard-earned money of yours they get, on programs great and small.
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Leadership is what elections are about. Do we choose leaders, or do we choose sheep?
Tuesday is the day that all these people, in months of campaigns that have been brutal in their claims, are finally silenced.
They have had their say, their chance, these candidates and all their followers who try to tell you so often what you should do and why you should do it.
The only voice that counts on Tuesday is yours.
If you vote.
When one side says, "We want to take America back," and the other side says, "Stay the course," on Tuesday, it doesn't matter anymore.
Their slogans about the Founding Fathers and the Constitution finally stop.
Nobody wants to go back to 1790 when women and the landless could not vote, or blacks were property and sure couldn't vote.
We all vote now. One person, one vote.
On Tuesday, black and white are truly equal.
Real people who struggle to pay the rent and light bill can vote.
Their vote - one per person - counts no less than all these talking heads and political flunkies who have been analyzing this election for months and years.
A retired granny living on Social Security who gets help once a year from Carolina Community Actions to pay the gas company to stay warm has as much power as the gas company CEO.
The lunch ladies at schools who pay bills with tips from a second waitressing job - my late mother was one of them - count as much as the man who runs a bank and gets millions in bonuses.
Election Day is the one day, really, where all are equal.
All those people who came out in record numbers to vote in 2008 during a presidential election year - record numbers of the young, the poor, the black and brown - will they turn out again?
The people who lined up and waited hours to vote because they said it was historic. Democrats are sure hoping so. Without them, Democrats down the line are sure to get stomped.
And if the voters don't turn out, those Democrats deserve their crushing defeat.
All those people who have organized and rallied since that 2008 election - this "tea party" phenomenon, which has shown once again the power in politics is the people - will they put their vote where their mouth is? If they do, Republicans will dance. If not, Republicans will whine.
There is no day like Election Day, when anybody registered to vote, any American, has such power.
A day when you decide the kind of school board leaders you want, the kind of state and federal lawmakers you want. The governor you want.
There is no test of knowledge, no quiz on issues at the poll. Just you.
Voting is, plainly, what freedom really is.
Most times, from the school boards up to the governor's mansion, from crowing about achievements over school test scores to scandals over sneaking out of the country, the people in South Carolina get exactly the government they deserved when they voted.
They received the leadership they chose - if they even voted.
If not, people who claim to be victims of politics or a system that won't listen to them deserve the roar of silence to their supposed wishes about what their schools and counties and state and country should be.