The Right to Vote

Friday November 4, 2016 | Filed under: News About ASI

As we near the end of the 2016 presidential election, I’m reminded of a recent trip to Budapest and a guide named Edith, who taught me a lasting lesson on the importance of freedom and a wonderful privilege enjoyed by most Americans: the right to vote.

Edith spoke eloquently about being born in 1956, into a homeland that has known many centuries of despots and invaders. During her lifetime, it was the Soviets, managing everything from Moscow – what you ate, to where you traveled, to the people to spoke with – and about what.

She lived in fear of being discovered studying English, but by learning it, Edith and her generation were able to read American literature, enjoy the music of the 1960s and 70s, and distill from those messages that the United States was free, people could do pretty much what they wanted, and that, while not perfect, we were striving for a more perfect, more equal union.

Edith’s story inspired me more than ever to relish – and exercise – my right to vote. So no matter who you support, I hope you vote on Election Day.

P.S. Please be assured that ASI doesn’t endorse any candidates for public office. We don’t play politics, and have had speakers of all stripes address members at our trade shows, speakers as wildly diverse as Bill Clinton and Donald Trump, as well as George W. and Laura Bush, along with conservative commentator Mary Matalin and liberal spokesman James Carville (a married couple who spoke at our recent Chicago show to give us insight into this crazy election of ours).

That said, ASI is committed to providing our industry with in-depth coverage of the entire political spectrum, including live coverage of the national conventions as well as nationwide bumper sticker polls and stories on the unique role promo products play in politics – and ways ASI members can tap into the lucrative political marketplace.

In fact, our industry has been involved in presidential politics since our country’s inception. According to Time magazine, during America's first presidential inauguration, supporters sported metal pins that said “Long live the president” and George Washington’s initials.

To that I say, long live Democracy!