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On Mother’s Day, most people want to give their moms a tangible token of their love, and of appreciation for the love their mothers have given them over the years. Popular gifts can be a restaurant meal, flowers or perhaps a trip to spa.

This year, people might consider offering something special: a promise to try to build a better future — for her and for everybody — beginning with a pledge to vote this November, and make the effort to make the best, most informed votes possible.

To be sure, that future will mean different things to different people. Some might support candidates and policies that seek to reverse the recent loss of some civil rights and freedoms, from voting rights to medical care. Others might believe it’s more important to endorse conservative values regarding school curricula, maintaining public order and border security.

Either way, higher voter participation will go far toward legitimizing an election that some candidates and other political entities already are working to undermine.

Low voting numbers have allowed energized extremists to control the primary process, and given Americans two major candidates who terrify those of other political parties, and disappoint members of their own parties. Both candidates carry higher negative than positive public perceptions, and many people believe neither fully represents their personal beliefs and goals.

This isn’t the world our mothers gave us, and it surely isn’t the kind of world they want for their children — or for anybody else. They want a world that’s safe to live in, with opportunities for success, both financially and socially.

Of course, the ballot only begins with the presidential candidates. Every seat in the House of Representatives, both in Congress and the state legislature, is up for grabs, as is one U.S. Senate and three Valley seats in state Senate. Several other state, county and local races also will be decided on Election Day. It has long been said that local officials have a greater impact on our daily lives because they enact ordinances and other rules that affect our conduct and impose taxes that lighten our pocketbooks but also help fund vital services and infrastructure improvements.

The general election is six months away. That’s plenty of time for those who are eligible to vote but haven’t registered to do so, and to begin gathering information on candidates’ positions. Major party platforms will be set at their national conventions, which are in July for Republicans and August for Democrats. Other parties and candidates will be on the ballot as well, and voters might find someone else might better represent their interests and deserve their support.

Our mothers deserve the best world we can give them, and they certainly want their children to inherit the best world possible. Votes cast in their honor might not be a tasty dinner or pretty bouquet, but they promise to have a much longer lasting, and significant, effect.

So this year, let us pledge to honor our moms with our votes — and offer to take them with us to cast their own votes.