I voted for myself and the children I hope to bring into this world one day. For my neighbors in Puerto Rico who can’t vote in the general election, despite holding American citizenship. For my best friend who is an immigrant from one of the Central American nations where thousands are now fleeing violence. For my dearest old friend who was murdered with a gun, the eleven innocent lives lost at the synagogue in Pittsburgh, students killed in schools nationwide again and again and again. For my Native brothers and sisters who don’t hold the “right” type of ID. For a mentor who cannot cast a ballot because of our broken criminal justice system. For the hardworking undocumented people who make our lives, business, economies function day in and day out without proper protection under the law. For my late grandfather who fought in military combat to protect and defend the promise of this great country. For refugees and asylum-seekers risking it all to reach safety in our sacred democracy. For the heroic souls who bravely championed and died to secure suffrage for women, for African Americans, for underserved and underrepresented segments of our population throughout history and still today. For all who have left our earth too soon because of a broken government, failing healthcare systems, unsafe environment or fatal discrimination, oppression and erasure in a struggling nation that has failed to protect them. For anyone of any race, gender, birthplace, ethnicity, background, faith, age who is denied the Constitutionally-protected right to vote.
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