OPINION: Why spreading voting knowledge is so important

London Green Opinion Writer

What a year 2020 has been; it’s not over yet. We have the presidential election coming up in about 40 days. If you ask some people, mostly the millennials, this is one of the biggest elections we’ve ever had, or at the least, the most important. If this election is so important, why are there so many younger people who could care less about voting?

When we get to this topic, so many viewpoints and opinions come into the conversation. Politics can be a complicated topic, but it just has to be discussed. Not all, but most of the younger generation aren’t too fond of voting. And here’s what they think:

  • My vote doesn’t count

  • Nothing is going to change so it doesn’t matter if I vote or not

  • I don’t really think the decisions that are being made affect me in any way

It’s sad to know that there are plenty of people that feel like this. I often wonder what we can do to change this stigma. No, you’re not going to reach everyone and change everyone’s mind, but if one person can be shown why voting is important, that makes a difference. 

Talking to people in the younger generation, I’ve found out that many of those who encourage people to vote don’t give the best information to those they are trying to persuade. They blurt out all of the information, rush through what they are saying and don’t really explain to others how not voting can affect their life and their future. 

The responsibility of voting knowledge doesn’t just fall on one person. But people who encourage voting and being knowledgeable about the issues cannot drop the ball either. They’re given the best opportunity to reach people on a personal level.

It’s not just about numbers, how many people you talk to in a day or how many people you get to register to vote on the spot. It’s about spreading voting knowledge to people and letting them spread what they just learned from you. Word of mouth is the best way to advertise something or to spread knowledge. Would you rather talk to 100 people and sign them up to vote only for them not to because you didn’t say anything of value to them? Or would you rather talk to a smaller number of people and sign them up to vote and they actually vote because you showed them the importance of voting?

I think that everyone has some sort of responsibility when it comes to encouraging others to vote. Especially in the times that we live in now, there are certain things that need to change and certain things that need to be in place. Policing, rights, freedom — you name it.

The time to be silent about political views needs to end. We learn from each other; every day there is something that can be taught to someone else. Take the opportunity to talk to someone who has mixed feelings about voting; you could change their mind, and they could change someone else’s and so on.

If you don’t want to talk to anyone about voting and making change, that’s simply on you. You either take the chance or you don’t — you decide.

There is also a level of responsibility that falls on all of us. As we evolve in life and we’re faced with different things, like balancing busy schedules, we have to find time to educate ourselves when it comes to voting and the issues. 

If no one will take the time to explain why certain issues are more important than the others, we’ll have to educate ourselves. It may be time consuming but if you truly want to know, you will find out. 

There can be so much to say about voting and what you should or shouldn’t do. The bottom line is everyone should exercise their right to vote and allow their voices to be heard. Educate yourself on the things you’re unsure about when it comes to voting. Take time to encourage those who don’t think voting holds any importance.

If you want to see any change, you have to vote and there’s no way around it. You can’t be silent and want change. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

London Green is an opinion writer. Contact her at [email protected] 

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Hi, I’m Lauren Sasala, a senior journalism student from Toledo. I’m also the editor in chief of The Kent Stater and KentWired this semester. My staff and I are committed to bringing you the most important news about Kent State and the Kent community. We are full-time students and hard-working journalists. While we get support from the student media fee and earned revenue such as advertising, both of those continue to decline. Your generous gift of any amount will help enhance our student experience as we grow into working professionals. Please go here to donate.