Not since my parents vigorously argued over Richard Nixon in 1972 have I seen a presidential race as contentious and divisive as this year’s battle between Clinton and Trump.
“That man is a crook,” my mother told my dad, furious he would cast his precious vote for Nixon.
It turns out she was right. At the time, though, the political differences in our home couldn’t be more stark.
This election year, if at all possible, is much worse. Emotions are running high as few people are without strong opinions about both candidates.
Being one who is loathe to discuss politics with pretty much anyone on the planet except my parents and my son, I’ve been drawn into the debate. It led to some pretty serious arguments with one friend. For the sake of our friendship, we decided it was wise to steer clear of the topic until after Nov. 8.
This election is so vitriolic, even my dyed-in-the-wool Democrat mother said the other day she didn’t think she’d see the day that Nixon looked good to her.
With our very elections system under attack from some quarters, one thing that is very clear — it’s crucial that every American vote.
Regardless of whom you support, your right to vote is precious. Blood has been spilled and lives lost defending this privilege. Simply bowing out as a voter should not be a consideration.
All of the talk of corruption and “rigging” is an unfounded, deluded distraction, and by turning in your ballot with pride and without hesitation, you have the chance to thumb your nose at a divisive, calculated campaign tactic.
Fact is, there is no better election system in this world, and it’s a privilege to be a part of it. Don’t squander that opportunity.
• Keven R. Graves is editor and publisher for the Whidbey News Group.