Letter to the Editor: Research candidates before casting your vote
Every year come election time, we are all subjected to swarms of people encouraging us to exercise our voting freedoms and participate in the election process. Proudly sporting their little “I Voted” badges, their aim is to make the country a better place by increasing turnout at the polls. However, increasing turnout is not what betters the voting process; voting is merely the last step of an American citizen becoming informed and exercising his or her voice in our government.
Many of the “Get out and vote” proponents will say that if nothing else, you should show up to polls and vote. But, if a potential voter hasn’t taken the time to research the issues or at least get a basic understanding of the candidates’ positions, what good is voting? These activists are encouraging people to make random squiggles on their ballots, usually based on that little letter beside the candidates’ names.
Putting good politicians in office is important, and it’s not something that should be taken lightly. If you want to see people running our government that share your values, taking a little time to watch a debate or read about their backgrounds will really aid in achieving this. If politics don’t matter enough to you to warrant spending a little time doing research, don’t feel compelled to vote. Let the votes of concerned people who care about politics carry more weight. All uninformed voting does is lessen the role merit plays in deciding who is in office.
Kevin Dodd, psychology senior