Why You and Everyone You Know Needs to Register and Vote

Voter registration for the United States midterm election is fast approaching. So, you’ve more than likely seen in increase in advertisements prompting you to remember that if you want to vote, you have to register. From paid promotions on Instagram to ads popping up after watching a friend's story to being outside the Sottile Theater sign. Everywhere I look, something is shouting “register to vote!”.  

But...why is that so important?

1. Political Awareness

Watching the news may be a bore, but being up to date is necessary for understanding what all is going on today. Knowing the prevalent problems that are occurring in our country is imperative because it will affect your everyday life. Being proactive in knowing how you feel about a certain topic, and effectively being able to vote for someone who shares the same beliefs, is one of the only ways to know that someone can represent you-- and the population-- well. 

2. Your Vote Does Matter 

Regardless of the false belief that single votes don't carry any weight, could not be further from the truth. Every vote counts, even if you believe that your side will lose the race, it is still important that you stand up for what you believe in and vote to stand by it.

3. It Will Affect You

Many times, it is assumed that state or local elections are unimportant simply because it's not the Presidential Election. This isn't true either. The smaller-scale elections will affect you even more directly. With an election as important as the midterms, it is necessary to realize that these people immediately represent you, more closely than you think.

4. Your Absentee Ballot Counts Too!

As an out-of-state student myself, I found myself questioning whether I had the right to vote for a locality that I wouldn’t even be living in. It kind of seemed unfair that I would have a say for what affects my family, back at home, but wouldn’t affect me here in Charleston. However, an absentee voting is still very important, as you are still a resident of whatever state you’re claiming. You will still be affected by who is in office, even if you are in college. 

In totality, even if politics seem daunting, it is very important to get your voice heard, in whatever you believe in. And, as of now, one of the most reliable ways for change to occur is through being involved and aware of what is occurring in the political world, and the best way to see that change happen is by voting.