Lysander Spooner argued that voting was a legitimate means of self-defense against the State, and noted that many supporters of the State consider both voting and abstention to be acknowledgments of the State’s legitimacy.
I have swung like a pendulum to varying degrees and extremes regarding government, the State, politics, voting, and ideology. Since you’re reading this then perhaps you have experienced this as well. I have supported candidates, worked grassroots campaigns, and gathered signatures for petitions. My political philosophy evolved to eventually rejecting the legitimacy of the State and refusal to vote. My reason being was I did not want to give the State legitimacy. But, as Spooner states, “…abstention to be acknowledgments of the State’s legitimacy”. It does not render it harmless, useless, or even illegitimate in so far as the violence it imposes on us.