As we’re well aware by now, it is imperative that all of us take advantage of the opportunities that we have and vote for systematic and grassroots change. Now more than ever before.
While the Presidential election is, of course, important to participate in, we often overlook local and state level elections.
Hey, full transparency: I did not always vote in my local elections, either. But I will now, knowing what I know now about why they’re so crucial.
As Maya Angelou once said, “When you know better, you do better.”
This is not a post I ever imagined I would create, but then again none of us ever imagined life would look the way it does now. If we all work together, do our part and participate as well as help share this information to help others, we CAN help to create a better society for all of us.
Here’s a breakdown as to why voting locally is so vital:
- You can directly influence policies. As in, stuff that affects you and your community on the day-to-day. Stuff like:
- Community arts and culture organizations
- Policies preventing discriminatory practices
- Rent/housing costs
- Public transportation
- Quality of local schools
- Creation of public facilities like rec centers
- Recycling availability
- Local leadership…etc.
- You can create real change. Everything has to start SOMEWHERE. If you’re passionate about a specific change you’re looking for, voting in your local officials who share that same concern/passion has the power to move these policies forward to a state level.
- Many federal policies are spurred from obvious interest at the local and state level. If you’re seeking change on a federal level, it’s important to vote for your representatives and senators. Although the Presidential election dictates the President, Congress creates laws.
- It’s not much effort for an outcome that could be life-changing. Visit https://www.ballotready.org/ and type in your ZIP code to find out who your current elected officials are so you can do your research.
- Those who win are determined by…not that much. As in, sometimes hundreds. So if a few hundred extra people were to show up for their local elections, it could make a major difference in voting in the right person who will bring the greatest positive change to the table.
- It’s empowering AF to have a voice and to know what’s going on in your world. Not to mention give the finger to people who don’t have your best interests at heart…like when it comes to the GOP trying to keep people from voting. Like gerrymandering (n) “The practice of dividing or arranging a territorial unit into election districts in a way that gives one political party an unfair advantage in elections.” You can learn more about it HERE (I had no idea this existed until doing my own research.)
Voter ID laws are another example of trying to prevent people, like racial and ethnic minorities and the elderly from voting. You can learn more about this practice HERE.
Action Steps You Can Take Now
- Make sure you’re registered to vote. (It takes all of 2 minutes). Click HERE to register.
- Sign up for election reminders HERE and find the info for your state’s local elections here.
- Click HERE and type in your ZIP code to find out who your current elected officials are so you can do your research.
- Click HERE to find out who your representatives and senators are, as well as search for legislation that affects causes you’re passionate about and who is sponsoring them.
Ultimately, you cannot have any influence over your community or state if you don’t vote in every election.
Do your part, do your research, stay informed, and help spread the word on how others can do the same.
It’s up to us to create the future we want to live in.
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