The American race for U.S. presidency is in motion: caucuses, primaries, straw polls and debates. Nov. 6 marks election day.
According to www.civicyouth.org, “An estimated 23 million young Americans under the age of 30 voted in the 2008 presidential election, an increase of 3.4 million compared with 2004.”
The younger generations are stepping to the plate and casting their votes to let their voices be heard.
The U.S. government was created “of the people, by the people, [and] for the people,” so we, as the people, should meet our obligation to vote.
But before we cast our vote, we need to do our homework. Preliminaries to an election are a good way to educate ourselves on the candidates. Educating ourselves and gaining knowledge about those running for office puts us in a position to make an educated vote for someone we think would do the best job based on their credentials.
“Although 57 percent of U.S. citizens between ages of 18 and 29 have never attended college, 70 percent of the young voters had gone to college, meaning that college-educated youth were much more likely to vote,” according to www.civicyouth.org.
Not only are more young people voting, but it’s the educated ones who are going to the polls. Some may say that their vote won’t make a difference or that politics are too hard to understand. According to www.civicyouth.org, during the 2008 presidential election, President Barack Obama’s strongest sport came from the 18 to 29 voting range.
These statistics tell me that the youth of America, and more specifically our age gro, can make a difference in casting our vote.
“America’s present need is not heroics but healing; not nostrums but normalcy; not revolution but restoration,” said Warren G. Harding, 29th president of the U.S. And the first newspaper publisher to be elected president.
It is our actions that allow us to heal America’s needs.
Around election time, phone surveys are popular for asking questions similar to “Do you think our country is headed in the right direction or on the wrong track?”
It’s in our vote that We can choose to take part in what direction our country is headed.
We may again return to our doubts and concerns regarding the ballot box.
“My vote doesn’t matter because no one cares what I think.”
But if you don’t speak out, who will?
A thought process like this is what causes a “spiral of silence,” where people think they are in a minority and no one shares their views so they remain silent. And because no one speaks out, the rest of the people with similar views remain quiet as well, creating a spiral of silence where nothing is accomplished.
In the words of late president John Quincy Adams, “Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.”
Speak out and don’t be afraid that others don’t see it the way you do. More than likely, other people won’t see it the way you do, but that shouldn’t stop you from voting.
Perhaps you’re from another state and that is an excuse to not vote because you have to get an absentee ballot and that process can be difficult. Laziness is shown on the part of someone who refuses to vote because they don’t want to get an absentee ballot.
If there are family members still in your home state, ask them to help. If you enlist others to get a ballot, it makes the process easier. Also if you are from a state that is border line on which candidate will get the vote, your vote can very well tip the scale.
It’s our turn to stand and vote. We are the rising generation, but how many of us can say we have voted? How many of us can say we know who’s running, we know what they stand for and we know who we want to sport?
This is our chance to educate ourselves in more than just mathematics and science. This is our chance to cast a vote and be a part of history.
My call to you is to stop the spiral of silence and stand and let your voice be heard. Even if you stand alone.