Today I will be voting with some of my favorite people in mind. Friends who just want to have their love recognized. Friends and students who just want to live and work without having to watch their backs constantly, despite the fact that they are wonderful, talented, educated, people without criminal records who would be nothing but an asset to our country.
Despite the fact that I am fiscally conservative, this election means more to me than just money. Somewhere on Facebook, one of my friends posted a quote that basically asked if fiscal policy was truly more important than fundamental rights of equality.
I live in Maine, one of the four states with gay marriage on the ballot. I am not afraid, in fact, I am proud to say that I will be voting for equality today. With all of the issues that we could be debating and arguing about, why are we spending time arguing about whether two people can love each other and have that love recognized by the government, hospitals, insurance companies, and other places that could give rights to married couples?
I think it's important that people understand the human element of this election. Lives will change. Maybe not yours, but maybe your neighbor's or your teacher's or your mechanic's or your student's or maybe someone you don't even know.
There are people in my life whose lives will change drastically depending on who wins this election. This is the first time that an election has a direct impact on someone I care deeply about. One of my close friends is affected every day by a policy that, should Obama be elected, could possibly be changed and her life would be a whole lot easier. If Romney is elected, she and her partner would most likely have to move to her partner's country of birth, possibly for the rest of their lives.
So I beg you: please vote. Vote for love. Vote for justice. Vote as if your life could change depending on who wins.