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Things that make you wonder

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By Allison Shepherd

    What if only one person from every county in Kentucky decided to go vote after all on election day? Would we be facing a recanvass this Thursday? The Republican Gubernatorial race was won unofficially by 83 votes, and there are 120 counties in Kentucky. I wonder....

   For years on primary and general election days, I would call my Mema and say, ‘You gonna go vote today Mema?” and she would always say, ‘Now baby you know my vote don’t mean nothing, I’m not going to waste my time”. I loved my Mema, and she was my rock and my foundation that has made me who I am today, but her stance on voting always surprised me.

    I wonder if it was because of the war. She raised my momma and her sister while Papa was away. She talked of walking to work, walking to the grocery with two babies, because she didn’t have a car. She spoke of washing clothes on a wash board. She would just shake her head when she would come to visit and glare at the endless piles of clothes to be washed at my home. I’m not sure why she wouldn’t vote. She was never one to complain, she would always say ‘and we made it just fine’. She would tell me ‘we didn’t have anything but what we had we took care of ’, but no way was she voting.

My years of convincing fell on deaf ears with Mema, so these days I try to change the mindset of my Aunt Bonnie, Mema’s middle child, and my mother’s sister. 

Well, the day before the primary, on my normal Monday evening call to my Aunt, I said ‘Make sure you go vote tomorrow Bon’, and I could hear Mema’s voice coming thru the phone lines. “Ahhhh….. now Allison that’s just a waste of time”, she said. Another generation of ‘my vote doesn’t count’ mentality.

I’m not claiming to be a political person, far from it, but I do believe in the right and freedom to vote.

If Mema were alive today, I would say, which of those Governor candidates do you like, and she would pick one, and I would have said, ‘maybe if you voted he would have won’. I said that to my aunt, yes I did. I’m not trying to be disrespectful, because I love my Aunt Bonnie. I just wish I knew why she chooses not to vote, other than the canned answer of ‘waste of time’.

I wonder what made a lot of folks across the state decide not to go to the polls on Tuesday. Approximately 12.6 percent of registered voters in the state made a decision to cast a vote.

I’m not going to stop encouraging my Aunt to go vote. Come general election time, I hope the answer was ‘Yes I voted, and I’m glad I did’. I wonder...