Letter From the Editor: It’s time to lose the ‘one vote won’t matter’ mentality

Letter From the Editor: It's time to lose the 'one vote won't matter' mentality

There is no disregarding, no matter which side of the political spectrum you lean towards, that these past four years have been a challenge both economically and politically. With the 2020 elections coming up, there are so many things at stake. Even more so now than ever, those eligible to vote need to make a commitment to do so.

 

At 17 years and 10 months of age, it becomes your responsibility as a citizen of the United States to put your input into the decisions of your nation. It is not a responsibility to be taken lightly. I’m begging you to stop saying “I’m only one person- my vote won’t matter anyway.” Every. Single. Vote. Matters. If 300,000 people don’t vote because they each individually believe it won’t affect the election, there are now 300,000 fewer votes. Those votes could make or break an election. In 2016, only about 56.9% of eligible voters in the US voted in the Presidential Election. That leaves nearly 115 million eligible voters out of the equation. Imagine how different our world would be today if 100% had voted in November of 2016. What if even just 75% of eligible people voted? That would still be a record-breaking number of voters. In fact, the current record of the highest voting percentage was made in the 2008 Presidential Election, where 61.6% voted. Still, this is simply not good enough. 

 

The truth is if you are eligible to vote for anything, from class officers in high school, to the President of the United States, and you choose not to, you cannot complain about the outcome. If you want change in any instance, it is your job to educate yourself about the matter, and then to make an informed decision about what you think is best. If you believe that you aren’t politically educated or opinionated enough to vote; let me help you out:

 

  • Don’t believe everything you see on the internet. If something seems questionable, it probably is. DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH. 
  • Some entertainment channels masquerade themselves as “News Networks”. FOX “News” is actually an entertainment channel, and therefore they are not held accountable for whether or not what they broadcast is true. For reliable news, you can visit BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation), which is notably the most reliable news source in the world.
  • Other reliable news sources in terms of journalism include The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and Times Magazine. These brands are committed to facts, not opinions or embellishments. 
  • When you’re getting ready for work or school in the morning, watch the news for 30 minutes. If you didn’t have a political opinion beforehand, I promise you will after you see the things that go on in our world today. 
  • Do not doubt your impact. 

 

The United States is struggling. It is not great. It is not fair. It is not equal. We need change, and in a Democracy, if The People want change, it is their responsibility to go out and get it. To make it. If you are of age to vote, I beg of you to register. Next, educate yourself. After that, please vote. Your vote matters every time. 

For more information about how, when, and where to register to vote, check out our article https://orangeandwhitenews.com/4453/news/deadline-looms-for-ths-seniors-wishing-to-vote/ .