In Canada, voting is not compulsory. I am always shocked that voter turnout is so low. Sometimes barely 50% of the population votes. Yet that doesn't stop people from complaining about government waste and ineptitude. They wonder how such people get into office. Well maybe if more people were involved in the process we would get better politicians.
Despite the fact that voting was voluntary, I always felt the need to go cast my ballot. Sure one might think that one vote amongst so many millions might not mean much. But I thought it was my privilege to vote. Millions of people around the world do not have such freedom. They are prevented from voting or have just one candidate to vote for. In Canada, even though sometimes the choices were not great, I always had the right to choose between the lesser of two evils.
In Australia, voting is compulsory. People get fined for not voting. By not voting, it makes it difficult to renew car registrations etc. It ensures that everyone at least takes some interest in what happens in the country.
However, the survey that is being sent out on same sex marriage is completely voluntary. And that worries me. If not enough people bother to send in ballots, the government can choose to disregard the results. If not enough people bother to vote, the government can say that despite the fact that 70% of the population voted one way, in reality when you add up the votes on the other side to the number of people who did not vote, there is no majority. $120 Million dollars would have been spent to continue to do nothing on this issue.
Obviously, I would like to have a huge yes vote. However, I know everyone won't be voting yes and I am ok with that. I hope that once a decision is made we can all move forward together and not as two warring factions. But the fact is, I want everyone to send in their ballots whether they be yes votes or no votes. Don't let your lack of participation be a way of deciding this issue. Blessings.