Can you say 'I Voted?' [Editorial]

Voting started Thursday.

As always at election time, we strongly encourage everyone to get out and vote. Whether it’s during early voting, which runs through June 21, or during the old-fashioned Election Day Tuesday voting June 26, it’s every adult American’s duty to vote. It’s also their responsibility to be seen voting as to set good examples for future voters not yet old enough to do so.

Those little white oval stickers emblazoned with the American flag and the simple words “I Voted” send powerful messages to countless youngsters who love and admire the adults around them.

Many grownups have taken their younger children to voting stations on Election Day to show them what it means to vote.

Sadly, many more adults don’t bother to vote, yet alone impress its importance on their children.

Therein lies the rub, or so goes a variation of Shakespeare’s “There’s the rub” from Hamlet. Children need to be taught it’s their obligation as Americans to vote, but too many adults around them who should be teaching that lesson not only don’t vote, but also don’t think it’s important.

In Maryland, and more specifically in Harford County, we are in the midst of the primary election, which will decide who represents their party of choice – Democratic or Republican – in November’s general election.

In some instances, there’s not a contested primary, meaning there’s only one Democrat or only one Republican running for an office and they will automatically advance to the general election. In one case, the race to fill the State Senate seat held by the late Wayne Norman, there’s no opposition at all.

The way it’s set up, Jason Gallion, a Republican, is the only one on the ballot from either party running for the Senate seat from District 35, formerly held by Mr. Norman, who died suddenly March 4 at age 62.

There are, however, plenty of contested primary races for Harford County’s voters to decide. Even if there wasn’t, everyone should go vote anyway.

Remember that now. Remember it again in the fall. And remember that every time there’s an election.

Our democracy and the free and open elections that choose who will be our leaders, even when we choose ones that many people think are the wrong ones, are what makes America great.

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