ATIVA ANTHONY, 27, is a San Diego native who lives in Grossmont. A security guard at Wilson Middle School, he has three years of college behind him. When asked why he didn't vote, his answer is simple. "Wilson Academy. I work two jobs -- I also bounce in the Gaslamp. I didn't follow the election, and I'm not going to vote if I don't follow it. I am registered. The last time I voted was in the 2000 election. I don't feel guilty. It's a privilege, but it's not something I'm responsible for. I don't have enough time to follow it, so I'd rather not vote than vote for something that I don't know everything about. I don't think most citizens are obliged to vote. For me to vote in the next election...get me out of Wilson, and maybe I'll have time!" he laughs.
TIFFANY STUMBAUGH, 23, has lived in San Diego since she was 10. A kiosk worker for ProActiv, she has a B.A. in liberal studies from SDSU. Her reason for not voting is based on dislike: "I didn't want to vote for Governor Gray Davis. I'm registered as a Democrat, so that was my choice. I'm registered, and I'll be voting for his opponent in November. I voted in the last election, and I feel guilty for not voting. But I feel like you have to vote for every single thing, and I didn't want to vote for the governor, so I didn't vote. Every citizen has a duty to vote, to a certain extent. I don't think this election was fair, because they made you vote for your party. Just being able to vote against Gray Davis will get me out in November."
GAIL GOERISCH, 31, has lived in San Diego for eight years. A customer-service specialist, Goerisch graduated from high school and has some college units. "I haven't been keeping up with the election and who was running, and it didn't feel right to just go in and pick things that I wasn't sure about. I didn't want to throw the vote off. I'm concerned about anything that has to do with schools, school taxes, and my community. I voted in the Bush-Gore election. I don't feel guilty about not voting this time, because I hadn't read up on the elections or the ballots. I didn't feel comfortable making a choice without knowing. Most citizens have a duty to vote, and I will vote when I take more time to read and be more educated."
MARY MCCALL, 18, is a lifetime San Diego resident. A clerk at Cinnabon, McCall recently graduated from high school and will soon be joining the Navy. "I just didn't really get into the election. I'm not registered and I've never voted. I probably will vote at some point, but I don't feel guilty about not voting this time. The way I see it, if you don't vote, you don't have a right to complain about what happens, so I won't complain! I think it should be a duty to vote. If nobody votes, then the government has all the say over what our whole country does. I guess it would take being involved in it to get me to vote. I'm interested in a lot of school stuff."
GILBERT WHITE, 45, came to San Diego from Kansas City ten years ago. White has a high school diploma and sells shoes. "I didn't vote because I'm not registered. I've never been registered and never voted. I have no interest. None whatsoever. I don't feel guilty at all. Citizens may or may not have a duty to vote. Like me, it's their choice. I can't think of any issue that would make me go out and vote."
IRENE LEGASPI, 19, grew up in San Diego County. A high school graduate, Legaspi attends college and works at Parkway Plaza. "I didn't vote this time because I had to work that day. I'm registered, and I probably could have voted before or after work. I haven't voted before. I don't feel guilty about not voting -- I don't know why. I just don't. I think most citizens have a duty to vote because we're the main contributors to who wins and what actually is decided for our community. It wouldn't take that much to make me vote in the future. I'll probably vote in November. I'm just getting more and more familiarized with the issues and people. Before, I didn't know that much about politics and all that."
ERICA MONTOYA, 19, came to San Diego seven months ago from Monterey County. A student at SDSU, Montoya works as a sales representative for Verizon Wireless. Montoya gives her reason for not voting in a tone of absolute certitude. "There's no point in voting. It doesn't make a difference. I'm not registered, and I never have been. I don't feel guilty at all. If people think it's going to make a difference, then go for it. The last presidential election convinced me that voting made no difference. It was close, but the people actually chose the Democratic one, but they went for the Republican because of the electoral votes. I don't think anything could make me vote. It's just a personal thing. Even if it did make a difference, I wouldn't want to do it."
JENNIFER ELLERAAS, 26, is another San Diego native. A stay-at-home mom with some college, Elleraas has never voted. "I'm registered, but I've never voted. I don't feel guilty because it's just not one of those things that I pride myself on doing. I think that if you're going to sit back and complain about the way things are, then you should vote. I think I would go to the polls and vote if there was an issue that I thought was extremely important -- like abortion. I'm pro-choice."
DANA EAGLE, 45, came to San Diego from Los Angeles five years ago. Eagle has one year of college and works with developmentally disabled adults. "I didn't vote because I felt the information was too busy about each issue. I'm registered and I voted in the 2000 election. I'm a Democrat. I feel guilty about missing this election. I work nights and sleep days and I got backed up on going to vote. I was going to educate myself at the polls. I think everyone has a duty to vote because it's about us. I don't think going to vote has anything to do with public awareness; I think it has to do with the individual and what they feel strongly about."