If you don't feel that any of the candidates adequately represent you, you can also spoil your vote.
It's meant to give you a concrete way to express your dissatisfaction with the government, as opposed to totally abstaining from the vote. (Disclaimer: I don't know how much effect spoiled votes are thought to have on the political process.)
Isn't it a horrible feeling not being able to vote?
When I lived in Canada, there was an election and there I was, reading about the candidates and their positions...and feeling helpless. The woman I was dating didn't vote, making it only worse. Here I am trying to persuade her to vote, if not for her then for me. I gave her a list of people I thought deserved to win.
She never left the house...bitch!
Yeah, it's pretty disconcerting. And while I agree that everyone has the right to abstain from voting, it's frustrating to watch other people exercise it when you can't make that choice and you actually care.
Do you think that the British feel as on the spot in the US about their national political stances? It seems like France is one of the few countries whose politics are even mentioned in our media.
Two curious and irreverent questions from the States on the Old Country. Are there American-style voting booths, and if so are they the cool retro ones with the curtains and the crank?
I don't think they feel as intense a pressure from the global spotlight as Americans. Perhaps from the Europeans. But I don't think most Americans are interested in British politics. In fact, I doubt most Americans could tell you what the major political parties are. They don't care what British people are saying, so long as they get hear the accent. :-P
I don't know about the voting booths. I didn't go to any of the polling places.
Screw being apologetic. The downside of being in a democracy is that when stupid people are motivated to vote, they are in the majority, and can be easily swayed by people that their leaders tell them are right. No pun intended.
And this is not to say that Republicans are, as a rule, stupid. Somewhere along the line, though, Republican became synonymous with "let us be a Christian nation". Which scares the ever-loving FUCK out of me. To a degree I find difficult to quantify with words. The "liberals" in the U.S. are actually the more politically conservative of the two parties. The "conservatives" are financially and socially conservative. I have no problem with financially conservative, but socially conservative is BAD BAD BAD. Somehow, socially conservative = Crusades.
Now that I've gone off on stuff that has nothing to do with what you wrote...
Learn German. And any time anyone starts hassling you about being an American and our interference policy, start goose-stepping around screaming in German about Der Fuhrer.
Maybe I should just start giving people ridiculous answers. On violence and environmental concerns: "Back in the States, I have eight guns and an H2." On Iran: "Nucular, it's pronounced NUCULAR." On abortion: "We see it like this: it's okay to eat babies, but not fetuses."
Wasn't Jonathan Swift from England? They'd probably be okay with the whole baby-eating thing.
I find it best when being accused of being an Ugly American to live up to the reputation.
re: responding to silly, prejudiced people, i applaud your restraint and taking of, as it were, the high road. personally, i'm ashamed that my country has produced so many prejudiced types, and i would like to apologise for them, but i'm not sure what sort of a difference it would make. i just wish that you and anyone else against whom such people are prejudiced didn't have to make such an effort to overcome such absurdly formed first impressions.
Well, the way I see it, if I react poorly, all I'm going to do is reinforce their preconceived notions. On the other hand, if I react calmly, I stand a chance of breaking down their prejudices. Fortunately, most of the British people I meet and speak to for more than five minutes seem mostly to be interested in hearing my perspective without assuming that it must be the one they're expecting. The worst thing that's happened so far is that I was standing on a street corner in South London chatting with a friend of mine, and a woman walked by, heard my accent and spat at me. (She missed.) I just hope that stays an isolated incident.
you have a very good point - i applaud your standpoint. i'm glad you've generally had a good experience with people you've met, though i'm pretty horrified by the random woman spitting at you. i think London is probably one of the least prejudiced parts of the country because it's one of the most genuinely multicultural parts of the country, and Londoners are used to the presence of people from all corners of the world because of all the tourists.
i am still annoyed that there are prejudices to break down, but then this isn't an ideal world...
If you have residency status you know you can enrol to vote here.
Yeah, but I can't apply for residency for another three years and five months!
Ah, I guess I lucked out because the monsta is an EU National.