*Note: This essay was published in the New York Times print edition on October 19, 2016 and is available online here.

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Tonight, like millions of Americans, I will be glued to my television, watching the third and last presidential debate. But unlike them, and millions of others, whatever I hear tonight, I won’t be taking it with me into the ballot booth. I am a major in the United States Army, and I believe it is my professional duty — and that of my fellow officers, in all branches — not to vote.

To be clear, I strongly believe that officers, like all citizens, should have the right to vote. But because military officers have a special responsibility to prevent politics from dividing our troops and separating us from society, it is all the more important for us to choose not to exercise that right (this is my belief, of course, and not necessarily that of the Department of Defense or the American government).

Read the rest at the New York Times.

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