Some mid-Missourians say they feel like being involved in politics is critically important. To find out what drives them, we're asking people about their political motivation and involvement. We will be periodically posting responses in our From Readers section.
Can you help round out the picture? Scroll to the bottom to find out how to add your voice.
Derrick Fogle is known by some as Columbia's "Hack Man," frequenting Liberty Plaza or Speaker's Circle to put on a show with his footbags, boom box and camera. He works at MU as the Lead AudioVisual Systems Engineer and is a frequent commenter on the Missourian's website.
1. Why is it important for you to be politically aware or involved this election season?
From a personal perspective, politics and government are simply a matter of human interest. This affects me, individually, and everyone, collectively; we all have a right to participate, within reason. This election season is important in terms of economics, civil liberties and the environment. There seems to be a pretty stark choice, vis-a-vis:
- The choice of the conservative movement doubling down on the same supply-side economics that have gotten us where we are today, vs. at least not making that worse;
- The choice of draconian civil controls placed on the population, especially regarding sexuality and reproduction, vs. significant advancements in gay rights, and again not making other areas worse; and
- The choice of outright hostility towards issues of environmental quality, vs. at least some effort towards environmental health.
At least, I'll call those the big 3. There are certainly more.
2. Was there a specific event or time in your life that prompted your involvement?
Not really. I've been a bit of a civil rights, human rights and environmental activist all my life. I registered to vote as soon as I was old enough, and I've voted in every major, and most minor, elections since then. I've always voiced my opinion, but until the advent of discussion boards, the voice never went very far. Now, my voice gets more traction, but the gain is still relative.
I'm involved because I can be, and because I want to be. I've got good analytical skills, and I've got what I believe are some good suggestions. I'm going to put them out there, and see if they go anywhere.
And, screw the whole self-esteem movement. When the right-wing nutjobs are wrong, I'm going to call them on it, crack their knuckleheads, and let them know what I think of their delusional crap. ;-)
We want to hear what you have to say. Please send us your motivations for being politically involved by filling out the form below or emailing us your response to submissions@ColumbiaMissourian.com. We're looking for a diverse set of answers — long or short, broad or specific — from people of all political persuasions. If there's someone you'd like to hear from, let us know or forward the invitation along.