Why I Vote (and I Think You Should, Too)!

By Katie Kamins
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“I don’t really care about politics.”

“But I don’t know how to register! It seems complicated…”

“It doesn’t really matter if I vote or not anyways, it won’t make a difference.”

There is something that seems so intimidating about registering to vote. It is easy to post our opinions on social media for specific candidates and the policies they advocate for, yet it is often difficult to connect our words to real action.

“Politics” has been seen as a dirty word—or, more accurately, a boring one— for quite some time. It makes the idea of participating in politics, a.k.a. voting, seem unnecessary. Good news is, this misconception is totally false!

Screen Shot 2015-09-22 at 2 57 58 PM
Katie’s sign reads “I vote because I want to make a DIFFERENCE in this country!”

Encouraging your fellow students to flex their voting muscles as well as working to expose and tear down systems that suppress the vote can create real differences.

Voting, in my opinion, is one of the most necessary acts any citizen can do in any country. 22 countries around the world, including Australia and Argentina, place such an emphasis on the importance of voting that it is mandatory. This contrasts starkly with the 54.9 percent of eligible Americans who voted in the 2012 presidential election.

When you vote for a candidate, you are making a difference. You are having the ability to see the policies you want come to life and the issues that you care about be addressed.

And when you get to the root of it all, politics is about people. Issues like determining if women get to have the right to control their own bodies, if we should act violently when in conflict with another country, if we should offer government-funded programs to those who need it and voter suppression in and of itself, all directly affect us. If you care about these issues and want to make sure your views are being heard, vote.

You have the power to vote, but you also have the ability to be an influencer on your campus.  It takes effort to encourage other students to vote by using the Get Out Her Vote Campaign, to empower people to put in their information into websites such as League of Women Voters or to check out the Feminist Campus state-by-state voter guide to get folks registered.  The payoff of making a difference in your community is worth it. Embrace politics and political freedom and register to vote today!

By Katie Kamins

Katie is currently an intern with the Feminist Majority Foundation, as well as a student at George Washington University, where she studies Political Communication. Her favorite places in DC are Adams Morgan and the Georgetown Waterfront.

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