Why You Should Register to Vote

It’s all on us.


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National Voter Registration Day was September 22, and Champlain College’s Center for Service and Sustainability held a booth in Rozendaal Courtyard to encourage people to sign up.

The 2020 election is an important one, as are most presidential elections. Young people have the chance to stand up for themselves and what they believe in, all by mailing in an absentee ballot or voting at a polling place.

According to “An examination of the 2016 electorate, based on validated voters” by Pew Research Center, 40 percent of eligible voters did not vote in the 2016 presidential election. Additionally, only 13 percent of voters were younger than 30.

We need young influence in politics. Both major political party candidates are over the age of 70. Both are also straight, white men. They are continuing the trend since 1789, besides Barack Obama, of course. But, there is one special thing about these candidates.And that’s Kamala Harris.

Everyone has issues, including Kamala Harris. Some people love her, some people despise her. But she is different. If Joe Biden is elected, she would be the first female Vice President and the first Vice President of both black and Indian descent. She is already making history by being nominated for this position.

The Biden/Harris campaign includes plans for helping the climate, racial equity, aiding immigration in a humane way, ending gun violence, and women’s rights, among others.

I’m not telling you to vote for Joe Biden. I know he has some issues, and as with every candidate, not everyone likes him. But that’s okay. But you should vote for whomever you think is qualified and would make positive change with you and your loved ones.

You should register to vote so you have influence on who has power over you. Vote for yourself, your family, your friends, and those who can’t vote. Vote for the country that you want to live in.

It is our civic duty to vote. But what does that mean? That we are expected to respect the beliefs of others, obey laws, and serve on a jury when needed, we are expected to vote. Throwing away that right is like voting for the person you would rather not have in office.

You may not be politically aligned with either of the major candidates, and that’s okay. I wish we lived in a world where there weren’t only two major political parties, and that we could vote solely for who is the right person for the job. If you are undecided on who to vote for in the upcoming election, choose the person who you think is the most qualified. 

Nervous about voting for the first time? Me too. This year, in the state of Vermont because of COVID-19, everyone who is a resident will receive an absentee ballot. Every single person, even if it is not requested. 

If you do decide to vote on an absentee ballot, make sure that all of the information is correct, or it will not be counted. Make sure it is a valid ballot, as well. Your vote will count if you don’t feel safe voting in person, or if you’d just rather vote from home.

If you haven’t registered to vote, go to the Champlain College Center for Service and Sustainability website and look at the sources for students. Not only will it show you how to register to vote, but it will also give other helpful links and tools.

But, whatever you do, be sure that you vote.