A Short Story by Mort Laitner
He sat in front of his desktop with his hands clenched. He had heard the news on CNN that morning. It made his coffee taste bitter. The word abstention burned his ears. He had hoped it would not happen but instinctively he knew it would.
Now he stared into the monitor as thoughts flooded his brain:
What should I do? Where will I go? Who will be there? How many people will show up? What should my sign say? Would they hide in the shadows fearing retaliation, claiming it was not their problem?
His fingers tapped all caps on the keys:
I AM SORRY, I VOTED FOR HIM!
THERE WILL BE A PRICE PAID!
WE WERE WARNED BUT WE DID NOT LISTEN!
He got up, picked up his keys, and headed for his car. Driving toward Office Depot, he heard the news again on NPR. The newscaster said the dreaded “A” word over and over again. His facial muscles tightened in disgust. His hands bit into the steering wheel.
Now on a mission, he marched into the store, where he bought a dozen yellow poster boards and a packet of four thick black magic markers.
As he paid, memories flashed across his brain. He had done this many times before, some 45 years ago. He recalled the risks.
He would not just sit in front of his laptop wringing his hands.
He would not abstain.