Election day is coming. You may know by now it’s important to vote. But do you know why? Do you know what you’re voting for?
This year has been unlike any other. We knew it was going to get crazy with the presidential election coming up. But back in the blissful “before times” of January and February when we were going about our regular business, going to work, socializing with friends and gathering with family, we had no idea what was coming.
Now we’ve experienced the coronavirus pandemic that’s killed 220K people in the United States, civil unrest, explosive levels of violence breaking out on our streets, sky-high unemployment and the crushing isolation of trying to avoid human contact. It’s no wonder our anxiety levels are at an all-time high.
Why Voting Is Important
This goes back to why it’s important to vote. How our government handles a major societal crisis will determine our emotional comfort levels, our ability to find work, take care of our loved ones, and even be able to leave the house and feel safe.
Voting is the one power we have to affect what our future will be. We don’t get much say in what the government does, but we can help elect officials who we hope will represent our preferences in how we want to live our lives. If they’re doing their job, they’re looking out for US, not other interests.
How to Vote
Every state in the U.S. has different deadlines for registering to vote. You can check to see if you are registered at the Rock the Vote website. If you requested an absentee ballot, you can conveniently vote by mail. In the year of COVID, this is an easy way to get your vote in and social distance. Be sure to check your state’s deadlines for putting it in the mail, so you get it postmarked in time.
With all the fuss about the mail these days, the best way to get your absentee ballot in is to physically put it in a ballot dropbox. Make sure it is an official dropbox as I’ve seen reports of dummy boxes going up to trick people. Look to see where the dropboxes are for your county.
You can also vote in person. Election day is Tuesday, November 3, but many states now offer early voting days to beat the crowds. Voter turnout is at record numbers this year, so plan wisely to avoid getting stuck in long lines.
And of course, when you vote, be sure to wear your “I voted” sticker. It’s the best fashion accessory you can have!
How to Help People Vote
This year, I volunteered to help voter turnout because I feel so strongly that we need to take control and get a grip on what’s happening in our country.
I volunteered to write nonpartisan letters to people in populations with a low voter turnout to encourage them to vote. It felt really good to write those heartfelt notes and drop them in the mailbox to encourage people to use their right to vote and make a difference.
If you want to take action, you still can. You can volunteer to be a poll worker or work to help stop voter suppression. You can also just check in with your circle of friends and family and make sure they’re committed to voting and know how and where to cast their ballot.
So get your ballot in and rock the vote! I want to see you wearing your “I voted” sticker!
KastleTags: how to help voter turnout, voting, why it's important to vote