Voting is very important to any democracy regardless of what offices, and measures, are on the ballot. It is the way the voice of the people gets heard. Don’t like a proposed legislation? Then vote against it. Like a certain candidate? Then vote for that person. Want to complain about how a measure could have not passed? Then vote. Want to brag about how a candidate got elected? Then vote. The key word being; vote.
It’s equally important to make sure that ones voter registration is up to date. States are allowed to remove voters who haven’t voted in a while from the voting roles. It seems that every state has a different time span for removing voters. It’s also important to know something about the measures being voted on, and to fill out the entire ballot.
There are people out there who are trying to make it harder for voices to be heard. They fear losing power, control, and the money that comes from being in office. The biggest weapon they have is propoganda and putting each side against the other one. Mostly, they fear that if more people can vote; they will be voted out of power. Because every law they put into place impacts every voter in their state. They use the misnomer that they are trying to make elections secure and fair for everyone. By making it so hard for anyone, including their base, to vote that they are more assured that they will remain in power. It’s why gerrymandering of districts is another popular tool and why the census is another vital thing for people to participate in. However, voter fraud is extremely rare. Most of the time it’s discovered. And usually it amounts to very few votes; and certainly not enough to change the outcome of any election. But they want people to be afraid of their own shadows so they won’t stop, take a breath, and realize what is actually going on.
Get registered to vote. Keep your registration up to date. And when the time comes vote.
To answer the prompt: Since I turned 18 I’ve voted in all elections.
Voter Registration Sources:
There are a number of places to register to vote, and check your voter registration:
- https://www.nass.org/can-i-vote (National Association Of Secretaries of State)
The image of the “I Voted” sticker comes from Washington States Secretary of States website. It is part of a collection of “I voted” stickers for sharing on social media. https://www2.sos.wa.gov/elections/downloadableivotedsticker.aspx