You only have one vote, use it

By SpencerRoush

Are you contributing to society by going to the nearest voting booth on Nov. 2, or is there something more exciting planned for that morning—perhaps sleeping in?

If this is the plan, think again. If you don’t vote in this election, spewing political diatribe over the next four years about the state’s budget disarray or complaining about useless taxes is out of the question.

In order to complain about politicians effectively, people must vote. Otherwise, it’s someone complaining about issues he or she doesn’t deem important enough to change on Election Day.

Even though these state-by-state midterm elections aren’t as glamorous as the presidential election, it doesn’t mean young people or anyone else gets a pass on voting. In fact, these state political races probably have a more direct effect on their constituents than a national election.

Considering 800,000 jobs were lost during the past decade in Illinois, and is one of eight states considered currently in a recession, people should be more concerned than ever with the future of this state’s economy and their place in it. Now is not the time to sit back and have others make choices for you.

It’s normal for most college students to think they aren’t well-versed enough in the Illinois political realm to make a choice at the voting booths. However, they have the option to change that.

The other argument for not voting is there aren’t worthy candidates on the ballot. If this is the case, vote for the one who seems best. No politician’s record is flawless. There are pros and cons to each candidate and it is the media and voters’ jobs to sift through their record or attend a debate to make a sound choice on Election Day.

Voting for someone without proper research or simply supporting the candidate of your party is as irresponsible as not contributing at all.

It doesn’t take too much time to look up articles written about the candidates and search for their political platforms online to determine if your beliefs fall in line with theirs.

So if you’re unsure of your plans on Nov. 2, it’s safe to say voting should take precedence over sleeping in, beating the final boss on a video game or catching up on a TV show.

Instead, exercise your right to have a political voice and help bring change to Illinois’ wavering economy. You can sleep in later.

Voting in midterm elections may seem inconsequential at this age because parents may still be footing the bill, but in a couple of years, you too will have to pay Illinois’ high property taxes and choosing a political representative won’t seem so insignificant then.