Do you know what is scarier than our country being run by Donald Trump or Hilary Clinton for the next four years? That thousands of college students are soon going to able to vote in their very first presidential election and are considering opting out. For many, their excuse it that they don’t like either candidate… I say that is not good enough.
In college we are given a great deal of information and are constantly placed in situations to help prepare us for the “Real World”. We study for hours, do our own laundry, and attempt to cook meals for ourselves without burning our houses down, all so that we will have all the skills necessary to become successful, functioning adults. Well NEWS FLASH, you are currently getting the opportunity to impact what that Real World is going to look like after you graduate and you’re giving it up. You’ve been fighting to be heard and make your own choices since you were in diapers. When you step into the voting booth that is exactly what you get to do. No one can influence your decision but you. You now have the ability to play a role in shaping your future and you’re about to blow it because you are too scared to even try.
Picture this. Look forward 10-15 years at the life you want to be living. I’m sure you know what kind of car you’d like to be driving, how much money you’d like to be making and maybe how many kids you want around your kitchen table. Now look outside of your home and think about what type of world you want your family to be living in. Do you want your children to grow up in a country where the death penalty is allowed or not? Do you want your kids to grow up in a school system with common core standards or not? Do you want their schools to be gun-free zones or not? You may think these questions are just hypotheticals, since you don’t have any kids and you’re safely snug in your bed at school. But guess what? Your kids in the future, the kids of today, and you when you were little all believe one thing. That there are grown-ups out there making sure that they are safe. Grown-ups are given a lot of responsibility, one being making decisions that ensure that the kids of tomorrow will have a tomorrow to look forward to. Children can’t make difficult decisions for themselves because they are too young and do not understand what is best for them. You may wish now that you were still a child whose parents were voting and making the tough calls to protect you, but the truth of the matter is, you’re not. You are now an adult. You’ve gone to school to get good grades, to get into college, to graduate, to get a good job and to have a successful, happy future. But what is success if you are living in a country that is unrecognizable? If you plan to plant roots in the US, do your part to protect it and help it grow into something that you are proud of. Whether you vote or not, the election is going to take place. A president will be elected and you will be graduating college and entering a world that is impacted every day by this individual’s decisions.
You have a little more than a month to get informed. Spend half the time you normally spend editing your Instagram photos and mindlessly scrolling through Twitter reading about the candidates and their views on the big issues. Years from now your Instagram caption won’t matter, but this will. Take a stand, raise your voice and do your part. Tuesday, November 8th, be there or be quiet for the next four years.
*If you aren’t sure where to get this information from, we’ve got you covered: here’s How to Become a News Junkie in Less Than 15 Minutes