Seven days. There are seven more days until the election and it is all hands on deck. Millions of Americans have voted already and as we enter this crucial point in our country’s history, we must remember to exercise our rights and vote. According to the US Census Bureau, Black voter participation decreased for the first time in 20 years in the 2016 election, going down by 7%, and only 59.6% of eligible black voters cast their ballots in the election. As a member of the Black community in America, it is your responsibility to get out and vote. Our ancestors were imprisoned, lost their jobs, and some lost their lives, for the right to vote and now 7% “opted-out” and more than 40% didn’t vote at all. That is unacceptable. Taking part in our democracy is the only way to ignite real change. This summer, protests erupted out across the USA, a racial reckoning was in the midst. However, protesting is one thing, it’s one way to exercise your rights, but voting is a fundamental way to make a real difference in the long run. Not just voting for President, but for state and local offices as well. City councilmen, senators, members of the house, district attorneys, judges, county commissioners, and so many more positions play a vital role in our everyday lives, even more so than the President.
Unfortunately, I am not 18 yet and will not be voting in the 2020 election, but I am doing as much as I can to aid my country during this stressful time. As a volunteer for phone banks, I call voters and make sure that they are registered to vote. I donate money to both local and national campaigns, and I constantly ask my peers and family who are eligible to vote “what is your voting plan?” Whether choosing to vote in-person or by mail, it is imperative that you make sure your vote counts. Georgia is a swing state this year. Literally, every-single-vote will make a difference. Please do as much as you can as we enter this crunch time, whether it is donating your money, time, or just voting. Our country, and my generation, need your help!