Why Bother to Vote?
By Daisy Garcia
Here are a few reasons why you should vote this year.
You should be in charge of your future.
Why hope for change when you can make change happen. Voting is important. When we vote we choose who will represent us and our values. It’s the number one way to ensure that your voice is heard on issues that matter to you. The youth especially has the opportunity to make a great influence in our country by simply just taking yourself to the ballots. Today the voting population includes equal parts between baby boomers and millennials. As the boomer electorate decreases in size it is a matter of time before millennials become the largest and most powerful group driving future elections in the U.S. Your voice is your power.
Voting is a right.
In many countries around the world, citizens are denied the right to vote and in others, women cannot vote. We are lucky to be apart of a country that was built on democratic values. Until the 15th Amendment was ratified in 1869, black men did not have the right to vote in the U.S. and until the 19th Amendment was ratified in 1920, women did not have the right to vote in the U.S. People have fought for our right to vote. People have been beaten and jailed to ensure that we all can vote. Can you imagine living in a country where you don’t have this right because of your gender or race? Barack Obama once said,
“When there is a vacuum in our democracy, when we don’t vote, when we take our basic rights and freedoms for granted, the politics of fear and resentment and retrenchment takes hold.”
Your vote does count.
Many citizens feel like their vote won’t make a difference, discouraging them from participation in elections. According to data from the U.S. Census, voter turnout in the United States is currently among the lowest in the entire developed world. The Huffington Post, also reports that there are 240 million voting-aged people, but over 100 million of them consistently choose not to vote. This is a big problem. That is nearly half of the voting population. Now you know why change isn’t happening because pretty much no one is voting. If you like a candidate, support them so they can build the change you want to see, If you don’t like a certain candidate vote against them. It’s simple.
It helps you stay engaged and informed with politics and current events.
Whether you like politics or not, every single part of our life is affected by it. You may feel that choosing that president or senator isn’t something that affects you right now but policies implemented by the politicians that represent you impact your future. So why not have a say? Not knowing enough about a candidate is no excuse to not vote. Research politicians. We live in an era where access to the internet is virtually anywhere. It’s easier than ever to be an educated voter. The first step to voting is getting involved. So check your voter status, research how to register to vote in your state, research candidates, and vote.
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