Opinion

Ah, sweet democracy: it is such a beautiful thing

The time was 12:30 p.m., EST, Nov. 2, 2004. The location was the John Smith Elementary School in Doral, Fla. Your humble columnist was there, standing in a long line to exercise a right that many have died for in the past and feeling truly honored to be able to use said right: the right to participate in the democratic process. I hoped, and truly believed, that John Kerry will be the next President of the United States, but even if the opposite happens, I’ll still be left with some degree of satisfaction. Why? Because regardless of the outcome, the American people have truly spoken, and participated fully in the democratic process that has long served as an example to the world.

As I stood in the line for an hour, trying to do some last-minute studying while listening to politically-charged songs on my iPod, exhausted from only three hours of sleep the night before, I couldn’t help but stare in awe at all the people who were just as determined as I was to tolerate such a line, simply because they believed in the importance of voting in this election. And I had it lucky-some polling stations had people waiting in line for three to five hours. People refuse to wait in lines for Space Mountain for a small fraction of that time, and most of us scoff in frustration if our Big Mac takes more than 20 seconds to cook. Think about that for a minute.

The record voter turnout this year, and the passion and enthusiasm shown by the American populace, gives me hope. Perhaps we won’t take voting for granted anymore. Already, news reports all over the world show amazement at how many people here are voting-akin to news reports of fairly recent democratic breakthroughs never thought possible before in other countries (i.e., South Africa, East Timor) years ago. It is truly inspiring.

Whether or not the government makes sure our voices are heard (and it remains to be seen), one thing’s for sure-we made those voices heard…loud. We didn’t whisper, we didn’t speak-we shouted. And the candidates, parties and media are listening. “Power to the people” isn’t just some catchy call to arms-it is a very real, incredible, awe-inspiring power that we’ve possessed since we, and this fine country, have come into being. And it’s truly a beautiful thing.

Jay Rooney can be contacted at j.rooney@umiami.edu.

November 5, 2004

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Navaughn Donaldson knew one thing mattered above all when he was forced to start playing center ahea ...

This spring hasn’t been easy for Miami redshirt sophomore Tate Martell, the former Ohio State quarte ...

The 2019-20 college basketball season is more than six months away, but the University of Miami Hurr ...

The University of Miami spring game Saturday will be here before you know it, and right about now, c ...

With about a third of the regular season left, the Miami Hurricanes baseball team is on the rise and ...

The Division of Student Affairs hosted a reception to present campus-wide awards and scholarships to ...

The University of Miami celebrates Earth Day with a host of activities at or near the Lakeside Patio ...

The nation’s oldest and most-widely known academic honor society inducted 45 students from the Colle ...

For the second installment of its “What Matters to U” lecture series, Student Government invited act ...

There is at least one member of House Hurricane in the Seven Kingdoms: alumnus David Nutter, who sha ...

Because of expected inclement weather, Thursday's game time has been moved up one hour to 5 p.m ...

Michelle Atherley earned the University of Miami track and field program's fourth ACC outdoor h ...

Canes' recruiting class now stands 25th in 247Sports Composite Ranking. ...

Miami head women's basketball coach Katie Meier announced Wednesday the signing of Moulayna Joh ...

The fifth-seeded and No. 21-ranked Miami women's tennis team begins ACC Championship action Thu ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.