Don’t Feel Bad About Not Voting Today

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Election Day is finally here! Time to fulfill your one civic responsibility besides jury duty, which you usually lie your way out of anyway. Sure, maybe you haven’t really been paying attention to the issues as closely as you could have — Someone is fat, right? And Mayor Bloomberg is rich — but you’re going to go pull the lever because, damn it, patriots fought and died so that you could live in a representative democracy, and you’re not going to let them down. That’s thoughtful of you, but don’t bother, says Times ethicist Randy Cohen.


So vote today if you actually know and care about the candidates, or the issues, but don’t “just vote” because it seems like the right thing to do. It’s not. You’re skewing the true expression of the will of the people, and basically just ruining democracy for everyone else.

Must You Vote? [Moral of the Story/NYT]