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Carroll County Times

Letter: Shrug off apathy and go vote

During the spring term at Carroll Community College, my anthropology professor asked the students to raise their hands if they intended to vote in the 2012 primaries and the November presidential election. Only half of the participants, or 14 classmates, responded in the affirmative.

This informal survey really disheartened me because the ability to elect responsible politicians represents a major privilege in a democracy. A person can vote this year if they were born on or before Nov. 6, 1994 or become 18 before the Nov. 6 election.

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All eligible voters, including young adults, throughout Carroll County should be very interested in two referendums that will appear on the November ballot. Same sex marriage and illegal immigrant in-state tuition fees are very controversial topics that will confront voters. These issues test the very heart of our constitution, especially such concepts as separation of state and religion, discrimination and civil rights.

Even though a law has been passed in Annapolis sanctioning marriage between two same-sex persons, religious and special interest groups have obtained the 55,736 plus signatures that will force a citizen vote before implementation or rejection of the legislation. No one can predict the results at this time.

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For those students borrowing money to pay for their education, the referendum sanctioning in-state tuition fees for illegal immigrants to attend state institutions of higher learning should be of interest. Also, the cost of any new program should be considered.

On a continuing basis, the right of a woman to have control of her body has become a major esoteric conflict between religious institutions and our elected officials in Maryland and the Obama administration. Should government, through national health care plans, be involved in contraception and abortion?

As a generalization, Republicans reject while Democrats favor expenditure of funds allocated for birth control in the public domain. This subject will continually arise in debates and projected laws throughout the United States.

Other major problems facing the electorate are the sluggish economy and our country being trillions of dollars in debt to China. And let's not forget our costly military efforts in Afghanistan.

This brief analysis shows that everyone, regardless of age, needs to vote to protect your own personal interests for today and years to come. Don't be apathetic. Go out and vote.

Jack Norris

Westminster


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