Today is Election Day in the States. Amid the frenzy of political estimates, strange-yet-true prediction tactics and a plethora of patriotic Facebook postings, is everyday life. Commutes. Work. Family commitments. All these aspects that normally run our lives.
(Yes, I voted.)
But today, I can’t help but wonder if that was my most important civic duty. Sure, it took just 30 minutes of my day, heck the same amount of time it took me to wait in a gas line yesterday! And, yes this election affects so many for the years to come.
But this wasn’t the task I felt most compelled to do. The event that made me feel most proud and humbled. The action that made me feel American.
Giving to others did.
Earlier in the day a friend put out a call for donations for Breezy Point, NY. Hurricane Sandy devastated this small community. Nearly buried in the political social media chirps, I started to email family and friends to spread the word. This past week, I’ve struggled in being able to regain some normalcy in my life while so many around us cannot.
Maybe voting isn’t meant to connect us as I felt with the donation collection. Often times, it feels so divisive My needs over your needs. But talking to my family about the devastation, going through our belongings to find new and gently used necessities for others, making the smallest of sacrifices for neighbors- that was duty.
Please don’t let your civic duty end tonight. Connect with your community- both local and global- as often as you can. That’s an action that can affect you beyond each presidential campaign.