Public Affairs News
Sep10FriDoes it really make a difference? September 10, 2021 Aimee Patterson
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Why I vote. To be honest, there have been times on my way to the poll when I’ve wondered if my vote really makes any difference. There are never candidates or parties that share all my values or fully meet my expectations. And leaders who hold term positions seldom think about long-term change.
So why do I vote?
I vote, first of all, because I am a Christian. My vote is only one vote. But even a pinch of salt can make a big difference to the taste of a meal. If we are the salt of the earth, we season our society by engaging it (Matthew 5:13). One way to do that is to vote.
I hold the right to vote as a citizen of a democratic nation. That wouldn’t have been the case a hundred and five years ago. In fact, women could vote at official meetings of The Salvation Army (then the Christian Mission) long before they could vote in Canadian elections. The suffrage movement worked for decades to get women into voting booths. And in 1916, my home province of Manitoba became the first to grant women the right to vote. In turn, I have a responsibility to honour their efforts by exercising that right.
Still, Canadians struggle to achieve gender equity, something for which The Salvation Army advocates. (Positional Statement on Sexism) This leads me to another reason I vote. I am part of a community. Loving others as I love myself means doing what I can to work for justice and equity. When I vote, I think not only of what is at stake for myself and my family. I also think of what is at stake for people more vulnerable than me, people for whom our public systems and structures, whether related to the economy, health care, education, justice, or the environment, are inadequate.
Why do you vote?Read more of our history with Suffrage at the International Heritage Centre.For more election information and resources go to the Public Affairs Election 2021 page.