Watching the local news tonight I was astonished to see a party-like atmosphere in downtown Sacramento. Yes, sadly, it is astonishing to see jubilation in our fair city but that's not the reason for my astonishment: the hulabaloo was, in fact, due to a drive-thru voter registration drive outside the Sacramento Convention Center which lasts thorugh midnight tonight (the deadline to register for the Presidential Primary in California.)
Booths draped in patriotic colors, balloons flying in the wind and rain, horns beeping...Hold on, I thought, this is America, right? The same America where about only 50% of the electorate even bother to get off their butts for the actual Presidential election?
It sure is.
I don't care how grating it can be to see our news dominated by political squabbling, or how ridiculous it is that we're on about the thousandth debate before we've even got official candidates... Americans are engaged! Wouldn't you believe it? People on the street are talking about politics, policies, and what matters to them as if they were..... shock ... horror..... Europeans!!!!
I love it. It's heartening to know that it's in this country to be engaged in the political process in an enthusiastic and passionate way. Republican (boo!) or Democrat (yay!), this has to be a good thing for this typically apathetic nation.