election checklist, week fourteen.

October 26, 2020

We have 8 days until the 2020 election in the US. That’s one more week during which I’ll be trying my damnedest to get leaders elected who will move the dial toward equity, inclusion, and progressive policies that will do the least harm and the greatest good.

I love lists. I love checking things off of lists. I’d hazard the guess that lots of folks reading this do, too. So, every Monday until November, I’ll be listing one specific action to take in preparation of the election. Electoral politics won’t solve everything, but voting is a tool in the box and it needs to be sharpened, oiled, and ready for action.

Week Fourteen: Vote and…

I voted.

Saturday was the first day of early voting in New York so I marched myself down to my early voting polling place and stood in line to cast my vote. The line was long. It snaked and switchbacked down blocks and around corners, but it moved swiftly enough that no one seemed to mind. Certainly, I didn’t. Like me, my line-mates had tired eyes above masked noses and mouths. The mood in the air was determined if not exactly joyful. We stood six-feet-apart as an October breeze swirled tiny golden locust leaves around our feet and the line grew longer.

When I voted for president in 2016, Faye came with me. I was hugely pregnant with Silas but somehow practically floating. I remember giggling with delight and anticipation as Faye perched on my hip and I filled out my paper ballot. I didn’t feel that way this time around, but I’m reminded of the message Gloria Steinem sent that day, which still rings true: “Voting isn’t the most we can do, but it is the least.”

No matter what happens next week or in the weeks to come, there will be work to continue. In the meantime, please, please, please do the least you can and vote.

And don’t forget:

+ Vote progressive.

+ Report voter intimidation.

Check your registration.

Make a voting plan.

Look past the presidency.

Phone a friend.

Show up.

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  • Reply Stacey October 26, 2020 at 4:48 pm

    My husband and I took a lovely autumn morning walk today to drop off our ballots at the library ballot box! I’ve always found voting to be a powerful experience, but this year even more so. Apart from voting out the current president, here in Oregon we’re also getting the chance to vote on things like limiting campaign finance, improving our local libraries (including building a new one in an often-neglected area of Portland), reclassifying penalties for possession of certain drugs, forming a police oversight committee, AND funding universal preschool in Portland. If ever there was an important and exciting year to vote, this is it!

    • Reply ERIN BOYLE October 26, 2020 at 4:53 pm


  • Reply Sue October 27, 2020 at 5:18 am

    I can do nothing but watch from far, far away, but I pray for a good result for all the good people. You deserve it so much. xx

    • Reply cristina October 27, 2020 at 3:57 pm

      I’m in the same boat, Sue! I am not the praying type, but have found myself hoping, feeling, and wishing so hard for Erin’s (and the many other good people’s) thoughtful and determined efforts to pay off.

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