Make Your Voices Be Heard:
Whether you are voting for the first time or even if you can’t vote this year,
your voice still matters!
It’s 2020, a very big Election year, and my questions to you are: what about you? Is this the first time you will vote? Do you feel your vote count? If you are younger than the legal voting age, do you think your voice matters? How can one vote make a difference?
Let’s go back a few years in my life, the year was 1996 and I just turned 18 the previous fall. It was a Presidential Election that year and my vote was going to help decide the next President of the United States. My friends and I had been bombarded with ads and campaign slogans. The TV stations and national news were filled with commercials and advice on issues about both candidates and hinted on what my vote should be. To be honest I was overwhelmed and did not know where to turn to get the facts.
Another thing that came across my mind about this election was that the nominees were 40+ years older than me. Did they really understand the younger generation of today or knew what matters to me at that time? Did my vote and voice really make a difference?
I want to tell you that in 2020 your vote and your voice are VERY IMPORTANT. You are not powerless. You have all the tools at your fingertips to get the facts you need to make a very important decision that can affect your future. You are ahead of the game in 2020, and have access to more instant factual details than what I could get back in 1996. Not only do you matter to this nation, but voting is part of your job as citizens, it is our legal right to have a say in this country’s future and of course your future too! And if you are too young to vote in this election, you are not helpless, your voice can make a difference even if it is not in a voting booth.
Don’t know where to start? Here are some helpful tips that may help you along the way. First of all, think about what is most important to you? Focus on specific issues. Study the candidates and see who aligns with what you believe in. Need help on finding information about the candidates? Check these sites out to help assist you:
“Vote Smart's mission is to provide free, factual, unbiased information on candidates and elected officials to ALL Americans.”
“VOTE411 is committed to ensuring voters have the information they need to successfully participate in every election. Whether it's local, state or federal, every election is important to ensuring our laws and policies reflect the values and beliefs of our communities.”
“Richland County Candidates and Issues List for November 3rd, 2020 General Election”
“To VOTE LIKE A BEAST means to go beyond being REGISTERED and READY to vote. It means being INFORMED about the candidates running for office and using that knowledge to make sure YOUR VOICE is heard on the issues YOU care about most.”
Don’t know where to register to vote? Click below or stop in the library:
Did you know you can stop in the library and fill out a registration form? We will be showcasing National Voter Registration Day on September 22, 2020. But don’t wait until then, stop in any time to fill out your registration at the library. We will hand-deliver it to the Board of elections OR you can send it in or drop it off yourself to:
Richland County Board of Elections
1495 West Longview Ave., Suite 101
Mansfield, OH 44906
The deadline to register for the General Election this year is October 5, 2020.
To register online you will need to provide the following:
Too Young to Vote? Let your voice still be heard!
Let your voice still be heard by helping the movement. Sign up to volunteer where you can. Use different social media formats to provide information and facts from the websites above to amplify your voice! Also check out:
Youth Service America’s ServiceVote campaign asks young people to help register, educate, and get their peers out to vote; to connect their volunteering and service to voting and advocacy on the issues they care about, and to increase youth voice and leadership in public decision-making. With 50 activities to choose from (10 in each category), there are options for all ages and all settings – individuals and families, groups/clubs/classes, or entire schools, organizations, or communities. Resources are provided for all 50 activities.
In closing, your voice does matter, think about an issue you want to change in your home community, then search online or go to your local library to find where to go to advocate for your issue, and if you are able, get out there and vote!
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