A guest post from Inés:
I am 21 years old and I have never voted.
Now before you think of me as another statistic (an apathetic and disillusioned young adult), you should know that it is not because I do not deem it worth my time, but because I do not have the right to vote in this country.
I am not allowed to voice my opinion or my concerns past the privacy of my own social circle. I left the one country I can vote in when I was 5 years old and I have lived in the United States for 11 years total. All I hear about is how great this country is, how patriotic people are, and above all how this is the place to make dreams come true. And yet come election time, so many people chose to not exercise their privilege and duty to vote.
The question is: why?
When pressed, most people will just say, “…because it does not matter, my vote does not make a difference anyways.” Truth is: it does matter.
Maybe in a state like California, your Republican vote won’t make a difference, but think of it this way:
How many countries hold elections regularly?
How many of those hold elections where the outcome is not predetermined or where a voter is not intimidated into voting a certain way?
Consider the history of oppression around the world before walking away from your civic duty. You should not criticize your government if you refuse to take partial responsibility for the way it is. You do not have to be passionate about politics or be an active participant. You do, however, have to think about where you stand in regards to the primary issues and be informed about the various candidates in order to cast an educated vote.
It is your responsibility, not only as a citizen of the United States, but also as a citizen of the world, to vote in a country where your voice can be heard.
Noah: So go vote. And make sure your parents and brothers and sisters will be voting. And your grandparents, too! Everyone. Even my father, who normally doesn’t vote in the Presidential election (since he doesn’t like that people get crazy about it), will be voting this year.