Engage in the issues concerning our industry

Did you take a “voting selfie” on November 4? I certainly did – I have one from every election I’ve participated in. I’ve only been able to vote in a handful of elections and I still think it’s a huge deal. When I was a kid, it used to be that I wanted to get a free sticker like all of the adults. Now it’s the satisfaction of making my voice heard…with the bonus of a free sticker!

As energized as I was on Election Day, I soon became disheartened. Many people I interacted with on social media, of various age groups, mentioned that they had no intention of voting – gloated about it, even. While I understand choosing to not vote if you don’t feel informed enough about the candidates and issues, what about not using your right to participate in the governing process is a badge of pride to brag about to your friends?

I can only come to one conclusion: You don’t vote, you don’t get to complain. And this is a very important message I want to drive home in our industry. There is a lot of legislation coming up in 2015 that directly impacts recreational boating.

If you aren’t involved in the political process – informing yourself on the issues, voting in elections, participating in government relation discussions, attending the American Boating Congress – your right to complain about the effects on your business goes away. The only way to make your voice heard is to actually raise your voice.

Are you upset by the delegate elected to represent you in Washington? Use that energy! Is your new representative one you trust to fight for boating causes? Use that energy too! ABC is still six months away but it’s never too early to start planning your attendance. The conference will bring together industry professionals with congressmen and congresswomen to formulate public policy and give us an opportunity to influence legislation.

The NMMA put out an election analysis recently to break down the election results, the effects on the Congressional Boating Congress and what this means for legislation going into 2015. It’s a great place to start becoming well versed on the issues concerning recreational boating.

You’ve got way more incentive than a free sticker. You’ve got an industry you love to protect.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *