We Should Be Ashamed…

We have a new cleaning woman at work.  She is a beautiful young woman named Elizabeth.  She is also brilliant, well educated, and articulate.  She cleans World Vision’s offices because she can’t find any other work though she has a college degree in HR. 

She is also the Secretary of the Soweto Youth League for the African National Congress (ANC).

And yes, that previous sentence, is chockfull of information you should be aware of: great history and power struggles.

This young woman could be the president of that league in Soweto, if not the whole nation.  She is motivated, educated, interested, passionate and vocal about how politics should work in her country.

She and her fellow members have been part of the group that urged President Mbeki to step down which he did Sunday evening.  We are president-less here in South Africa, for good or evil.

But this woman has plans and dreams and desires and she speaks for many of the youth here.  They want jobs, they want homes, they want an end to corruption from the top level down, they want the death penalty reinstated.

Young adults in America want things too.  I know this is true, I am one of them.  But what we want is often different.  And what we do to get it?  Well, we don’t do too much.  A recent study found that 23% of young adults in North Carolina are not registered to vote.  This is a result that holds true over much of the US.  Young adults may wear t-shirts, write on their blogs, talk the talk of politics but we don’t consistently walk the walk.  And some young adults just stay out of it entirely, finding that keeping up with politics is too much work or too boring.  I am ashamed for us.

Our election is coming up in a little over a month.  Are you voting?  Are you wisely and prayerfully choosing the best candidate?  I don’t care if you vote Democrat, Republican, Independent-but I absolutely believe you should be voting in this election.  Don’t abuse the privilege we have been given to freely vote, to have access to work, to housing.  Don’t shame yourself over and over again.  There, I’ve said my piece.  If that doesn’t encourage anyone, maybe I’ll let Elizabeth write guest post on the blog.  I’m sure she’d have more inspiring but harsher words for you.

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3 Responses to “We Should Be Ashamed…”

  1. Wow – what a privilege for you to meet such a wonderful young woman!

    I’ve been saying the same thing about voting for years. As soon as you are 18, register. And vote each election. Don’t take it for granted – it is a responsibility.

  2. Living in such a young, fragile democracy is definitely a reminder of how important voting can be to people.

    I vote because of the Africans. I vote with their interests in mind. I vote for the candidate who I think has the greatest stake in taking care of the least of these. This year, I will smile as I vote for the candidate that most of my church-going friends seek to demonize and I will do so because the rich need no more breaks in this life and the poor deserve to have hope, no matter what it costs. Above all, His will be done.

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