Wizards Can Wrock the Vote
Have you ever voted?
According to statistics there’s an excellent chance that you’ll say no if you’re under 30, aside from if you are not yet or were not 18 in the last election.
Historically, everyone under the age of 30 is considered pretty apathetic. During 2008, a time when youth voter turnout was expected to be higher than ever, it only hit 52%, just 2% above the 2004 presidential election. Numbers drop dramatically in off years, though that is true across demographics. But overall, the youth vote is historically the lowest.
Why? Well Ashley hit on that question a bit in her tumblr post yesterday.
“Now there are definitely some good reasons why you haven’t voted yet. Not sure who you side with? Are you a bit uninformed? We get it! There are a lot of resources though to change this! Have you checked out ISideWith? One of our staffers found this and it’s very interesting! Now, a quick disclaimer, not everyone who is running in this years presidential election is on there so it’s accuracy may be a bit skewed, but it opens your eyes to some of the issues going on in our current election. The biggest thing is to get informed!”So not being informed is a big reason. During presidential elections we are inundated with information on the major candidates, but for our local races, unless we seek out the information ourselves, it is quite easy to never know anything at all.
Many people also don’t think their vote matters. And, honestly, sometimes it is difficult to argue with this perspective in the big elections. But really, it’s not true. Every vote does matter, especially in swing states. Additionally, in local elections often every vote makes a huge difference. When I was in high school a local race was decided by literally 15 votes. Fifteen! That’s nothing to joke about.
Finally, elected officials decide much of the policy that affects us every day. Taxes. Student Loan interest rates. Funding for public transportation. And that’s not even counting the possible national decisions that determine who can marry whom, whether we’ll have affordable health insurance, and if we go to war.
Voting is important. It’s simultaneously a privilege and a right. It’s literally a way to perform a peaceful overthrow of government every two years. In the case of young people, it’s a very real way to show other generations that their assumptions about us are wrong.
As my favorite fictional president said “Decisions are made by those who show up.” Show up. Make a difference. You never know if your vote is the one that decides it all.
We’re wrapping up our discussion on voting rights over on our vlog on Friday. Don’t miss it!