Here at IGNITE, we’ve received a lot of questions from our community wanting to learn more about how your vote impacts specific issues. We will dive into your vote and its impact on mass shootings, unemployment, healthcare, racial inequality, reproductive health, and climate change. Up first, mass shootings and gun violence.
The science and economics are in. Scientists from a variety of disciplines agree that the Earth’s climate is changing and it’s likely due to us humans. Global business leaders view environmental issues as being among the greatest risks we face going forward.
You know who else is super concerned about climate change? Young voters! With very good reason. Millennials and Gen Zers are deeply aware that they’ll bear the brunt of climate change. They’ll be the ones living with the effects the actions (or inactions) we take today.
Systemic racism - something that has plagued our country for centuries - has been on full display in 2020. We have witnessed despicable acts of violence against our Black community and People of Color, and just when we think we’ve seen the worst, another story or video surfaces, leaving us to wonder when enough is enough.
Many studies and polls place healthcare as the #1 or #2 concern for American voters in this election. The economy is right up there with it, as these two issues are often highly related. This is even more obvious and pressing given COVID-19 and the economic and societal upheaval it’s causing.
How many times a day do you open Instagram Stories to find someone you follow has posted a poll? More than once I’d guess. We are constantly being inundated with polls, political and otherwise. Especially leading up to the election, it seems like all the headlines are touting numbers. However, unlike social media polls, election polls are nuanced, and quite frankly confusing most of the time.
We all heard this statistic after the 2016 election: 52% of white women voted for Trump. And now new polling shows the same trend could play out for middle-aged white women in 2020. Yet all the candidates are ignoring a vital demographic: new voters. Given that one-in-ten eligible voters will be from Gen Z this fall (24 million new voters!), Gen Z may prove essential to the outcome of this election cycle.
Your vote does matter! There is no way to say that loudly enough. We need to knock down every argument we hear about why voting doesn’t matter because it truly does. In 2016, the winning margin in Michigan averaged only two votes per precinct. Even if you don’t live in a swing state, you should still vote. Why? Because there’s a lot of talk about contesting the results of this election if President Trump isn’t reelected. However, it’s awfully hard to contest a landslide win.
A recent analysis found that more than 558,000 presidential primary election ballots were rejected because of mistakes. Yikes! That means that over 100,000 people didn’t get their votes counted or voices heard.
Unless you're living under a rock, you've probably been hearing a lot about making a plan to vote. Due to several factors unique to this election cycle - the pandemic, cutbacks to the USPS, rampant misinformation, and blatant voter suppression - it isn't enough to be a registered voter. You need a detailed plan to get your ballot, cast your vote, and check that it's counted.
Elections have consequences. Just as voting has the power to reshape our country with each election, so does not voting. Which is why voter apathy is so frustrating. Deciding who and what to vote for is an active choice, but so is not voting.