This column is dedicated to all of you non-voters out there – and I know that there are several million of you skulking around New York City alone.
If you think the world is going to hell in a handbasket (and that must be one hell of a handbasket), you can build a house with Habitat for Humanity, you can go to church and pray or you can even play beer pong at a bar. But one thing that's an absolute minimal requirement for you to be a passenger on Spaceship America is to vote.
- New York State residents - Register to vote here
Think of voting as a membership card into the club of complainers. Annoyed at the bike lane on your street? I don’t want to hear about it unless you voted in the last mayoral election. Oh, all politicians are crooks? Then vote them out of the office – it's almost as easy as hitting "like" on your cousin's Facebook page.
- Invite your friends and family to register to vote on Facebook
I know we have our work cut out for us after reading that the city's new "Chief Democracy Officer," Ayirini Fonseca-Sabune, skipped voting in a bunch of primaries. Mayor de Blasio defended his new appointee, saying she couldn’t vote because of "some of the things that were going on in her life at various moments."
But that's precisely the kind of "the dog ate my ballot" argument that we need to reject if we want everyone in New York to feel like they’re part of the solution. If we’re all in this together, then there’s some pride – or shame – in the ownership of the people who are put in office rather than just a shrug or a sigh as you download another game to play on your smartphone.
- Need more info on this year's races? Take a look at our voter guide
Sure, voting in New York City should be easier. But I guarantee that it's easier – and cheaper – to cast your ballot than it is to get a Shake Shack burger during a Mets game – and the only indigestion you'll face is if your candidate loses.
Even the laziest politicians break out of their shells when they think they're going to lose their job – and high voter turnout makes many of them sweat. So scare a politician, feel good about yourself, and join the complainers club. Vote.