America is on the cusp of the election and according to recent polls; Governor Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama are still neck and neck. Social media has heavily influenced this year’s election, so if you don’t know what’s going on, you’re living under a rock!
Originally, I set out to ask my fellow Penn State students, many of which would be voting for the first time this year, their opinions on the election and it’s importance. If you read any of your friends live Twitter or Facebook feeds during the debates, you know how heated and passionate people can get over politics. I was ready to throw in the towel after hearing several uneducated and somewhat apathetic responses when I stumbled upon two freshman twins, Amanda and Betsy Simon.
At a large table inside of South Dining Commons, these girls spent hours encouraging students to vote this coming Tuesday. “We are here as organizing fellows for the Penn State students for Barack Obama campaign,” Amanda says.
Remember all those students with the clipboards positioned around campus? Yep, that’s them! These organizing fellows were on a mission to get students to register to vote, regardless of their political affiliation. Later on, they began promoting the Barack Obama campaign and now, they spend their days reminding and encouraging students to get involved.
Regardless of which candidate they are promoting, these girls have dedicated a lot of time to simply encourage college students to utilize their given right, make an educated decision and place their vote.
“A lot of people don’t realize that the college age group is just the tip of the iceberg for the largest voting demographic. In the last election, 21 million 18-29 year olds didn’t vote. For a swing state such as PA, it’s really important for people our age to wait in line and take the time to vote. Were responsible and old enough to take care of ourselves. Voting, to me, plays a huge part in that,” Betsy says.
“I think that young people, especially of the college age, are the future. They are going to be the one’s affected by policy on jobs, student loans and healthcare. These all affect us directly. If students don’t vote, they’re all neglecting their responsibility to make educated decisions that directly pertain to them,” Amanda adds.
Voting will take place Tuesday, November 6th in the HUB. Whether or not you come out to vote remember what Amanda says:
“I do not care who people vote for as long as they utilize their given right to vote. There are people in other countries that would and are killing for this right. We are so lucky.”
Photo by Fuli Wang