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Privilege must be exercised to remain vibrant

April 7th, 2014 in News

Voting is a right that must be exercised to remain vigorous.

We fear voter turnout Tuesday will reflect voter apathy and voting atrophy.

Voting is more than a personal activity, it is a public privilege.

In the United States, the privilege is taken for granted too often.

We are reminded of the story told by a former Missouri Supreme Court judge who was invited to witness the first democratic election in a foreign country. The judge related that a peasant rode a mule during a day-long trek, cast his ballot, and rode back to his village.

His right to vote for his government leaders and representatives was both rare and precious.

When a person limits voting only to those elections where they have a decided interest in the outcome, the process suffers.

Jefferson City will find a single citywide issue on Tuesday's ballot. Proposition A would "eliminate the primary and therefore the candidate receiving the most votes at the general election would win the office ..."

In the city's five wards, only one seat is contested. Incumbent Carrie Tergin - Carrie (Tergin) Carroll on the ballot - is being challenged by Glen Costales in the 4th Ward.

Voters in the Jefferson City School District will elect three Board of Education members from among five candidates. The candidates are: Tami Turner and John Ruth, elected incumbents; Ken Theroff, appointed incumbent; and newcomers Steve Bruce and Harold Coots.

Other municipal and school board elections will be decided elsewhere in Central Missouri.

Polls will be open from 6 a.m.-7 p.m.

We encourage registered voters not only to cast their ballots on Tuesday, we ask that they take time to become familiar with the candidates and issues.

We believe that is little to ask in return for the privilege and right we enjoy.