Look, I get it: Its November of an election year, and youre tired.
And then, there are those of you whoreally just want it to be over because youre tired of them both.
Its been a long and dirty election season. A whopping 16 candidates dropped out of the GOP race, and Bernie Sanders battled Clinton all the way to the Democratic National Convention.
There has been name calling, attacks on character, mudslinging campaign ads and the circus that was the three presidential debates. By now, weve seen it all.
But just because youre tired doesnt mean you should stop caring a week before Election Day. Ill let you do that on November 9.
Heres why you need to keep your political energy up until the election is over:
The Political Olympics
The presidential election is like the Olympics for politics. We wait a few years to watch a small number of individuals battle it out for their country, or in this case, political party.
Just like its an athletes honor to compete for their country, its your honor (and responsibility) to vote.
You have the opportunity to choose the person whowill run the country for the next four years. Not everyone in the world gets to do that.
Im not here to lecture you on the privilege you have in the United States compared to non-Democratic nations, but I am here to tell you that this is your chance to participate in government.
If you dont vote, you cant complain.
The Millennial Voting Gap
Being tired of the election also means you shouldnt just suddenly decide not to vote.
According to the Pew Research Center, Millennials (those in the 18 to 35 age range) make up 31 percent of the electorate.They tie with Baby Boomers as the largest voting demographic, but turn out to vote at the lowest rates.
In fact, only 46 percent of eligible Millennials voted in the 2012 election. Those numbers are even lower in non-presidential elections.
Dont let your voice go unheard out of laziness. Show the country Millennials care about the future. Vote.
Dont Forget To Go Local
Voting because its your civic responsibility isnt the only reason you shouldnt stop caring about the election now, though.
Yes, I know youre tired of hearing about Clinton and Trump, but the presidency isnt the only office youre electing. State and local government offices are on your ballot, along with a multitude of propositions and measures.
I think we often forget about state and local government elections because information about the presidential election is often so easily accessible.
Facebook and Twitter are clouded with peoples opinions, and news outlets have never-ending coverage on the latest statements (or scandals) from Clinton and Trump.
Even if you avoid social networks or news media, youre still bound to hear about the presidential election from someone around you.
So what about state and local elections? Do you hear about the individuals running for your local school board as much as you hear about Clinton and Trump?
What about ballot measures and propositions? Yes, you may hear ads from PACs telling you how you should vote, but does that really give you full perspective on the candidates or issues?
This is where your participation in government takes a little bit of work. Do your research.
The truth is, your vote actually matters more in local elections than it does in the presidential election. Dont give up on voting or brush off that power just because youre tired.
The election isnt over until its really over.
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