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The Voter’s Speakeasy featuring unbiased reporting and insight into life at Vote Smart from our staff, interns, and volunteers.

It's About Time

2009 August 21 - Bonnie

Almost ten weeks ago, I set off to save the face of democracy. Or rather, to be part of the rescue team. I still remember my drive from my home away from home A.K.A Kalamazoo College, MI. I left my "K bubble" and found yet another bubble. Only this time, my bubble entailed tracking bills, selecting KEY VOTES, writing bill summaries, and answering the voters' research hotline. Not class notes, exams and an endless pursuit of As.

Awesome! That was my first impression when I arrived at the Great Divide Ranch, Montana. Surrounded by nature's perfect blend of mountains, rivers, lakes, trees and a big sky, the environment spells peace and tranquility.

I soon got to know my fellow interns. Though my accent said it all, I still remember glances that seemed to wonder what on earth I was doing here whenever I said I'm from Kenya.

Well, where I come from gave me every reason to be here. I love my country for many reasons, top on the list being the fact that it's maintained years of peace and stability in a continent stereotyped with violence, poverty and underdevelopment. But, I still feel edgy on the rampant corruption, clientelism, old-worn-out leaders and limited press, some of the issues that continue to threaten government of, for and by the people.

Reality hit home hardest when I compared my country's and America's most recent presidential election, which were only eleven months apart.  It's baffling how different the ...

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