Everyone should exercise their right to vote


Farah Merchant, Staff Writer

Election Day has arrived and I have heard many people choose to opt out from voting claiming both candidates are disagreeable. They have decided not to exercise their right to vote, something our forefathers have fought for, to sit back and let other people make the decisions.

Although some people lack the motivation of choosing between two undesirable candidates, it is more imperative than ever that everyone exercises their right to vote, in the presidential election, as well as smaller, local elections.

Choosing between the Democratic Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump is a decision that many Americans have found difficult. However, both these candidates embody different perspectives and ideas, so it is important to consider the policies and viewpoints of each candidate in detail before making a decision.

Refusing to participate in this process is akin to giving up essential democratic rights and leaving them in the hands of a smaller group of people.

If you decide that the two major party nominees do not fit your viewpoints, there are other options such as third party candidates or writing in a candidate. The argument is often made that voting third party or writing in a candidate is equivalent to throwing your vote away. However, every vote truly does count.

“Everybody’s vote counts,” Coppell High School History of the Americas teacher Michael Brock said. “I think [they] need to think in terms of does counting for me mean I choose the winner or does counting for me mean I put in my vote for someone who’s best for the job. That should really be the focus. Your vote does count because you are putting in your input for what you think and who you think should be the best for the next term. It is not putting in a vote for the winner or the loser. I would encourage people who think that way to reconsider about their vote. Every vote does count even if it’s not going towards the winner.”

Though these candidates do not have high chances of winning, using your right as an American is important. By not choosing to vote for the candidate of your choice, you are diminishing their chances even more.

The foundation of the United States is based off of the idea of certain freedoms: freedom of speech, freedom of religion and freedom to exercise your vote. Dismissing the idea of voting solely because you believe that your candidate of choice is going to win is reductionist.

Why? Why would you give other people the power to control your life? You’re given this privilege to vote and so if you’re choosing not to then you’re silencing your own self.”

— Lauren Harris

The idea behind voting is agreeing with a candidate’s ideas for this nation. People’s ideas differ and though you are not a majority, you should not dismiss your right.

“Why?” CHS senior Lauren Harris said. “Why would you give other people the power to control your life? You’re given this privilege to vote and so if you’re choosing not to then you’re silencing your own self.”

Many  fail to realize the importance of their voice claiming that the loss of one vote will not have a big effect on the entire spectrum of things. However, if everyone said this, then there would not be any votes cast.

No matter how small you perceive your voice to be, it will be heard in the grand scheme of things.

To contact, Farah can be found at [email protected] or @farahmerchant_ on Twitter.