This may not seem like a novel idea to those of you, who have actually been voting since they turned 18. However, I until now have spent my adult life in the U.S., of which I am not a citizen. As strong of an opinion as I have of the President, I’ve become accustomed to being a bystander in political matters. Therefore, it took me by surprise when I received my voter registration in the mail last week for Japan’s parliamentary elections. I’m excited about this as I am about going to the dentist (maybe slightly less since voting isn’t painful).
The problem is, I’m really not that informed about the candidates, whose campaigns mostly consist of screaming their promises on a megaphone and shaking hands at major train stations (I think it’s supposed to show their humble attitude or something). I’m not a big fan of the current prime minister Junichiro Koizumi, but we don’t vote for the prime minister, so it hardly matters.
I probably should’ve paid better attention to the Pig-mobile that goes around enouraging people to vote. Or I’ll go take a look at the poster boards to see, which face I like the best. The sad thing is I don’t think parliamentary members change much in the country. It’s still a country run by bureaucrats for the most part.
I’m still going to vote though since the booth is close to where I live, and for the principle of it. If I don’t vote, I won’t be able to give PMK a hard time about voting (or not voting) in the November elections, which I do care about.