New Castle News

February 1, 2013

Voting is an essential right to be embraced

By Staff
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — Editor, The News:

In 1776, America’s founders gathered in Philadelphia to draft The Declaration of Independence.

Eleven years later, many of those men, plus others, met there again to draft a plan for governing the new nation, The Constitution of the United States.

The right of citizens to vote is mentioned in the Constitution no fewer than three times: Amendment XV — Section I — having to do with race, color, or previous condition of servitude; Amendment XIX — having to do with a person’s sex; and Amendment XXVI — Section I — having to do with age (18 or older).

These amendments note the right of citizens to vote shall not be denied or abridged. Carl Leubsdorf, in a Dec. 21 article, expressed concern over efforts being made to throw out the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which is pending before the Supreme Court. The act requires prior approval of voting changes in 16 states with past histories of discrimination.

Congress is in the process of conducting hearings to determine if some states revised their voting laws to prevent, or at least to make it more difficult, for minorities to vote in the last election.

George F. Will, in a recent article, expressed his belief that one of the reasons for non-voting is “the likelihood of any individual’s vote mattering is infinitesimal; and because the effort to be an informed voter can be substantial, ignorance and abstention are rational.” Also, there are those who prefer that a large segment of our society does not vote.

I believe that widespread participation in the political process is essential for the fulfillment of both the individual and society. Yet only 64 percent of Lawrence County’s registered voters voted in the most recent election.

People should do their civic duty and exercise their right to vote.

Angelo Pezzuolo

Lake Road

New Castle