I’m pretty sure we’ve all been hounded by at least one person (or completely annoying and unnecessary text message) to get us registered to vote in the past few weeks in preparation for Election Day.
“This is your civic duty!”
“Exercise one of the most important rights given to you in this country.”
“The midterms are coming!”
While all of this is true, I’m worried that we have spent so much time encouraging people to vote in this election and not enough time emphasizing the importance of actually knowing who and what you are voting for.
Putting someone into office is not a responsibility to be taken lightly, yet many of us have not heard of the candidates’ names that are on the ballot until it’s sitting right in front of us.
Yes, voting is a vitally important and impactful power that we as American citizens often take for granted. But voting uninformed is a bigger crime to this nation than not voting at all. How can you sit back and check a box in a few seconds at random simply so that you can pretend you’re doing something good for your country?
This election is very important, despite the fact that it’s not what we consider a big-ticket election. Local politicians have much more of an influence on your everyday life than the president does, yet we pay the least amount of attention to these candidates. More often than not, the incumbent candidates in state and local elections are reelected simply because their name is recognized, and they are already placed in a position of power. Once you have power, you don’t let just anyone take it away from you easily.
The Internet is the most advantageous resource that you have at your disposal. With the power of the World Wide Web, we now have the ability to get our information in only a few seconds. Carve out the time to look into the candidates on your ballot. All it takes is a simple Google search and the politician’s webpage will definitely be one of the first few things to pop up. A politician’s web page contains information on their main political platforms and at the very least you can take a few minutes to compare their views to your own in order to help guide your decision along.
Make some power moves this election season and help make your opinions known. But make sure who you’re voting for is actually going to help make this happen for you before you decide to just make a snap decision on what could drastically affect the future of your community— or your life.
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