We are all ordinary people, until some are challenged and rise to perform extraordinary accomplishments. In 1903, two bicycle manufacturers, the Wright brothers, flew an airplane 120 feet at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. It proved powered flight was possible.

In 1927, Charles Lindbergh flew nonstop from New York to Paris in 33 hours, shrinking the Atlantic Ocean crossing from weeks to hours.

Every vote counts. In 1920, Febb Burn wrote to her son, Harry, a state legislator, to vote for suffrage. He then changed his vote from "no" to "yes," and Tennessee became the 36th and last needed to ratify the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.

In 1983, a physicist named Sally Ride climbed into the Challenger capsule and became America's first female astronaut to rocket into space — Go Sally.

So what do Francis Hopkinson, Tom McKean, Caesar Rodney, Abraham Clark and William Whipple have in common? You're right. They all rose to prominence as generals, judges, counselors or artists prior to their greatest historical accomplishment, risking their lives by signing the Declaration of Independence.

The Founding Fathers didn't make voting a requirement of citizenship. They left it a choice, and hoped citizens would carry enough to defend democracy.

You and I won't be in the history books because we voted, but given the enormous consequences of this election, voting qualifies as our extraordinary accomplishment. Let's all show American pride, by doing whatever it takes to vote as early as possible.

CARL DOMINEY

Astoria

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