53. An elector who has received a ballot and returns it to the deputy returning officer declining to vote, forfeits the right to vote and the deputy returning officer shall immediately write the word “declined” upon the back of the ballot and preserve it to be returned to the returning officer and shall cause an entry to be made in the poll record that the elector declined to vote. R.S.O. 1990, c. E.6, s. 53. [emphasis added]
It’s also election time in the US, and Jodi Dean weighs in with her perspective.
Voting matters to all those circulating facebook injunctions to vote, telling us to tell our students to vote. Really? We should lie to them and try to get them to feel that this is change they can believe in? That their choices between fascists, oligarchs, and idiots are choices about what’s best for the country? No.
Unfortunately, I fear that even a no vote does little. I don’t know about in the US, but here the system has no way of dealing with abstaining. Meaning that even if 95% of people didn’t vote, the majority result of the 5% who did would rule the day. There’s no provision for quorum, and it seems to me that the system that is so rightly viewed as corrupt and untenable would not respond with the appropriate reform in order to reinvigorate the political process. The message sent by a bunch of no votes would likely fall on ears deafened by the ideology of fidelity to the number, that can only comprehend communication that fits into a narrowly defined paradigm of what counts as a political message: “If that’s how many voted, then that’s the way it is; those others should have voted too!” This is a real conundrum.
Doing nothing would be better–especially if it became a mass strike.
Standing around would be better–especially if it became a rally or a march.