I have been very diligent in going to the polling booth and have been with almost every election cycle. Naturally the reason is because I value my vote with all my heart, as I have stated before.
However, as my maturity in elective politics began to take shape, I began to be aware of the neutralization of my vote because of voter fraud which on many occasions is intentionally driven by interested parties. As I read about how voting places were set up in non-public places in Philadelphia (even in apartment complexes), the city where I used to live, I became rather wary and suspicious about the whole electoral process.
I certainly do not want to convey to anyone that I am alienated by the franchise, but I did feel very disenchanted since I felt thoroughly deceived by the perpetrators of fraud. As I studied each election and learned that whenever a close election occurred and even when the Republican was in the lead on election night, they almost always lost the election when a prolonged recount finally ends. This occurred repeatedly during elections over the past decade and a half in the States of Washington and Minnesota.
The Democrat candidates usually win by very thin margins after votes were produced during the recount from several shady sources. The only notable exception was the presidential election of 2000 when George W. Bush prevailed over Al Gore after much fanfare, which was nationally televised and every day during the recount was a nail-biter.
Though I was too young to have voted in my native country during the times when democracy was still the rule of the day, my father and other elders said that they were free and fair and they felt very proud and pleased to have participated in the exercise of their franchise. Now, that I am a US citizen I too can claim that my vote has a meaning, if fraud was absent the meaning may be more profound.
Fraud may be a factor of discouragement to a sector of our population which have decided to no longer participate; since they may feel that their votes do not count or make a difference. But, somehow that illogic cannot be allowed to prevail because it is a self-fulfilling prophecy. The vote that is not casted definitely will not count or make a difference.