By Ally Ortolani
Simply put, voting is one’s civic duty. Upon turning 18 years old, most Americans are entitled to vote in federal and state elections.
However, voting wasn’t an inherent right for all Americans, as it is today. For instance, women across the nation just celebrated the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment and women’s constitutional right to vote this year. In retrospect, that’s not a long time, making it even more vital to exercise one’s right to vote. If you don’t vote for your interests, who will?
It is extremely paramount to voice your opinions, no matter what side you are on. Do you let others make your decisions for you, or do you value independent thinking? Quite frankly, if you value your personal independence, voting should be valued too.
Individuals should be making their decisions based on how much information they can acquire, and acting upon them through voting. I am a strong believer that you surrender your right to complain about the government if you fail to vote.
I think it is completely healthy to complain about the government, particularly in the setting of a healthy debate. Having an educational and mature conversation on political matters can help with the understanding of differing viewpoints.
Personally, I enjoy speaking with my friends on political matters. At the end of the day, I respect them and their opinions, even if they go against mine.
“Elections belong to the people,” said Abraham Lincoln, putting it best. “It’s their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.”
Ultimately, individuals should research candidates and any current issues before making an informed decision that works for them. When you vote, you go beyond your selfish interests toward something we, as a nation, should have in common.
Like it or not, the government is an omnipresent aspect of our lives. Think about it: schools, homeland security, roads and even health care. Voting allows individuals to use their voices to express their opinions on how the government should operate. Do you not like the current government officials? Vote them out. Do you like how the government is being managed? Vote to preserve the present state of affairs.
In a sense, voting can be seen as a way to express one’s love for our country; however, even if you don’t love our country, you still have the right to vote to change it. This is why students should take it upon themselves to vote in the upcoming election. Luckily, students have access to an organization that promotes this notion.
HPU Votes is an organization on campus that empowers students to vote. In the past, HPU Votes hosted events on Constitution Day, where students participated in American history trivia, Constitution games and giveaways. On other past occasions, students could find HPU Votes set up at the philanthropy tables in the John and Marsha Slane Student Center, advocating for voter registration. And it only takes two minutes.
Because of this organization, I learned that I am able to vote in the state of North Carolina, where my political views more closely align with the state, rather than my home state.
Being in a state that coincides with my political beliefs is of the utmost importance to me, another reason why I continue to vote. As someone who believes in-person voting is critical, I will do so in this upcoming election on Nov. 3.
I am privileged to have the right to vote, especially as a biracial woman. I will always stand up for what I believe in, regardless of the backlash I might face. Voting matters.
If you believe in democracy and civil society, voting is what you should do to preserve our liberties.