Published: Dec. 18, 2014 By

Selfie of Scott Ellis


Scott Ellis’ Facebook page looks different than those of a lot of his social media peers. Ellis, 43, is an administrator of the group “Don’t Vote,” one of many such gathering places on Facebook. His own newsfeed is speckled with notes encouraging his friends to join him in his voting abstinence.

The Texas native is quick to point out that his reasons for not voting go way beyond such common excuses like apathy, a lack of interest or a jam-packed schedule.

“Opting out of the voting process and encouraging others to do it, lowering voter turnout in general is like a vote of no confidence in the system,” he said. “By not participating in the process, you don’t imply consent with the outcome.”

The father of two teenage girls considers himself an anarchist, and he is well aware of the stigma that comes along with that choice.

“That doesn’t mean throwing rocks through windows,” he adds calmly, with a straight face that leaves no doubt that this man is at peace with his manifold critics, who include his own family. “I don’t go to the voting booth for the same reasons I don’t get a mob together and boss my neighbor around just because I have the majority.”

The software engineer, who works in Boulder and lives in Lafayette, can’t remember the last time he voted, or for which candidate. “Probably in my 20s,” he said. Back then, he voted Libertarian because he couldn’t make out a meaningful difference between Democrats and Republicans. “They both envision a role of the state in a person’s life that is way, way too large.”

When he realized that the odds of any given third-party candidate are miniscule, Ellis made a final decision: “I realized I had to withdraw from the process altogether.”