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A Few Choice Words on Election Day 2011

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[Image - Norman Rockwell's "Election Day, 1944" - courtesy of the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art]

... and by choice I mean someone else's. If you haven't already, please go vote and we'll see you back here tomorrow.

***

Cox or Harding? Harding or Cox?
You tell us, populi - you got the vox!

Franklin Pierce Adams, "Vox" (1920)

***

The proudest now is but my peer,
The highest not more high;
To-day, of all the weary year,
A king of men am I.
To-day alike are great and small,
The nameless and the known
My palace is the people's hall,
The ballot-box my throne!

Who serves to-day upon the list
Beside the served shall stand;
Alike the brown and wrinkled fist,
The gloved and dainty hand!
The rich is level with the poor,
The weak is strong to-day;
And sleekest broadcloth counts no more
Than homespun frock of gray.

To-day let pomp and vain pretence
My stubborn right abide;
I set a plain man's common sense
Against the pedant's pride.
To-day shall simple manhood try
The strength of gold and land
The wide world has not wealth to buy
The power in my right hand!

While there's a grief to seek redress,
Or balance to adjust,
Where weighs our living manhood less
Than Mammon's vilest dust, --
While there's a right to need my vote
A wrong to sweep away,
Up! clouted knee and ragged coat!
A man's a man to-day!

John Greenleaf Whittier, "The Poor Voter on Election Day" (1852)

***

Democracy is the only system that persists in asking the powers that be whether they are the powers that ought to be.

Sydney J. Harris

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