Why Should You Vote?

Elizabeth Bolin, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

There has been a lot of buzz, particularly geared towards young people, about voting in the upcoming Midterm elections. Why is it important to vote?

Being a high school student, it is sometimes easy to fall into the role of the child, dependent on her parents and free of any life-changing responsibility. Yet, a simple birthday transforms a child to an adult, an adult with a responsibility to her country and her generation.

The youth shall inherit the earth, preferably an earth that isn’t destroyed by nuclear war or hurricanes. Young people account for half of the voting population (eligible voters) with the other half composed of baby boomers, essentially the seniors of our society. Millennials are predicted to become the largest and most powerful group driving elections in the near future, but as of right now only half of these eligible voters exercise their right. By not exercising this right, we lose the ability to direct issues that will affect us for years.

Every vote matters, not only because elections can be close, but also because you can support or diminish a candidate’s margin of victory. This means that if the person you voted for wins, your vote will allow them to have more power and advance their agenda. If the person you voted against wins, your vote will force them to support more moderate policies.

We are directly affected by the outcome of this election. Young people have been hit the hardest by recent, crippling financial blows, such as the great recession in the late 2000s. Policy changes in healthcare and social security are being considered, which are two things that directly affect the future of our generation.

Not sure where you stand? There are plenty of resources online that provide you with detailed descriptions of each candidate and the policies they stand for. Essentially, this election will decide which party controls the House and Senate.. Depending on which side wins, this will have a major influence on widely debated issues, such as gun control, healthcare and taxes.

Registration is easy; all you need is a valid driver’s license and a computer. It’s even possible to vote online or vote early.

Americans fought hard for the right to vote and the right to have a say in the government. Unless you plan to run for office, voting is the only way you can pave the way for change. We  youth can be powerful. We have the ability to shape the future and sway an election. Why sacrifice that?

Wisconsin Ballot Explanation: https://www.vote411.org/ballot?street=621%20S.%20MIchigan%20St.&city=De%20Pere&state=Wisconsin&zip=54115