Op-Ed, Opinion

Make your voice and vote heard

While many of us are still studying for our midterms or finally getting over them, a more important midterm is coming up: the midterm elections.

You’ve probably been bombarded by people for the last couple of months asking if you were registered to vote. In fact, it was literally everywhere: billboards, ads, social media, pamphlets slid under your door and from the mouths of celebrities such as Taylor Swift. More than ever, it’s imperative that we all vote, especially as young people.

There is the frequent saying that “young people don’t vote.” And the facts show this too. According to a poll by the Public Religion Research Institute and the Atlantic, only 28 percent of young adults were absolutely certain they were going to vote in the midterm elections compared to 74 percent of seniors.

These midterm elections hold enormous weight. They will not only shape the trajectory of Trump’s presidency but the political landscape of our country for the next two years.

In the last couple of months, we’ve been bombarded by issues affecting our democracy, climate, national consciousness and more. How we vote this midterm will have a lasting impact on our country for many years to come.

All 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 35 out of the 100 Senate seats will be voted on, along with the 36 state governors that are up for election. If there is an issue that you care about, this is the time. If you no longer want our president focusing his time on tweeting insults, then this is the time. If you want to see change nationally and locally, this is the time.

We also need to keep in mind that it is a privilege to be able to vote if you can. In Florida, former convicted felons still aren’t able to vote. If you are a permanent resident living in Florida, you can’t register or vote as well. There is also a long history of voter suppression among young, black voters in Florida. Still despite the many trials put in our way to stop us from doing civic duty, we must carry it out.

The University of Miami isn’t always seen as the most politically active campus, but we would like to think that we show up when it matters. Whenever there are issues on campus, we discuss and organize, whether it be through our own personal channels, or the Multicultural Student Affairs, or a student organization. We take it to our deans if needed, and we’re grateful that we have an administration that is quite democratic.

In our quest to become more civically engaged, we all need to take it to the polls. It’s easy to say our vote doesn’t matter, but if there’s an election where our voice needs to be heard, it’s this one.

Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial board.

October 22, 2018

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The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.