I was approached by a man in a tan three piece suit this morning as I was walking out of Starbucks with a small (I refuse to use their lingo) skim latte. He introduced himself and asked if I was registered to vote. I immediately recognized his name, as well as his face, from the numerous Rogers Park blogs I read. I have read very few good words about my ward’s alderman. If I trusted those blogs, I would believe that he is solely responsible for all the poverty and violence in my neighborhood and that he may very well be the Antichrist. But in all honestly, I have no clue about anything related to this man. Heck, I don’t even know anything about the responsibilities of an alderman. So, there I was standing in front of a controversial elected representative of me, a man who I have a lot of questions about, and in true perennial wallflower fashion, all I say is “yes, I’m registered.”
Even though I now look at this interaction as a missed opportunity, it did get me thinking. Lately, I’ve heard several people mention that they don’t want to register to vote in Illinois but would rather file an absentee ballots from their ‘home’ state (the state their parents live in) because they believe their vote would “matter more.” I don’t know if I agree wholeheartedly with this logic. I understand that the whole blue state, red state thing makes the presidential vote more complicated but I still think my vote for local politics matters just as much as my presidential one. Don’t get me wrong, I know this is the most important presidential election in a long time but I just hope it doesn’t completely overshadow the other elections that are also taking place on November 4th. That being said, I think I need to get googling and educate myself on what else will be on the ballot.