I have participated in various voter registration drives for the League of Women Voters of Dallas. I can’t help but compare the indifference I encountered at these drives, to the enthusiasm I witnessed at a very different League function.

Several years ago, at the Meyerson, a very large group of immigrants took the oath to become citizens of the United States. The eagerness and sincerity of these people literally brought tears to my eyes. They were so proud of their accomplishment. Now they were eligible to vote and to become living voices and participants in this great country.

None of the cynicism of our non-voting citizens was evident that day. These immigrants, for the most part, had come a long way to achieve the ability to live in a country that allows its citizens a fair representation, legislators who are available and accountable to their constituents, and a free press which reports on what the government is doing. For most of them, the right to vote was a prize to be cherished – something they never had before.

All politicians are not alike. Can you compare Thomas Jefferson and George Washington to Adolph Hitler and Joseph Stalin? If we have people in office we do not like and we do not exercise our right to vote, then who is to blame?

We must take the time to evaluate the candidates presented to us. There is enough available non-partisan material around for review. The League of Women Voters in Dallas publishes a Voters Guide which can be obtained at the libraries throughout the City, including the Lakewood Library. If a legislator is in favor of something you oppose, then it is up to you to write or telephone him/her and make your voice heard. Legislators do listen. They depend on your vote to be elected. If you are unhappy, they need to hear about it. “Your Elected Officials,” a League brochure listing all the addresses and phone numbers of the Dallas legislators, is available in the libraries and the League office.

A registration drive was held by the League of Women Voters in Dallas on Jan. 29 at the libraries throughout the City. If you did not take advantage of this opportunity, do take the time to register and remember to vote. Also, remember to look for the League’s nonpartisan voters Guide, which will be available in the libraries after Feb. 13.

If you are in need of further information, you may call the League office at 688-4125.

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