By Mataeo Smith
The last seven months have been hell to say the least. Colleges were shut down halfway through the spring semester; businesses were forced to close their doors; killer hornets briefly roamed the streets and a radically-right Supreme Court justice was just confirmed. At least the 2020 presidential election voter turnout has increased.
This may be the highlight of 2020, which says a lot, but nevertheless, it’s great. CNN reported Monday that more than 60 million pre-election votes have been cast and 33 states have surpassed their pre-election vote totals from 2016.
One could say the orange man’s presidency has contributed to this outcome. For approximately 1,378 days, he has sprouted divisive rhetoric that has resulted in acute convulsion of the United States. The violence that comes with his die-hard constituents is only a soupçon of the havoc he has bestowed onto the country. While on a path to erase everything done by the Obama administration, Trump has inspired the next generation of voters to not-so-kindly show him the door. Big name celebrities along with various social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have been drilling the concept into Gen z’s head since September.
“Not registered to vote? Click here for more information.”
“Make sure to go out and vote.”
“Election day is quickly approaching, #Votehimout.”
The second one opens a social media platform, they are barraged with public service announcements to vote Nov. 3. Celebrities like Ariana Grande and Billie Eilish have been further pushing young voters with their presence on social media.
Grande posted a photo onto Instagram Tuesday hash tagged “Tuesday Truths” stating the staggering 2016 voter turnout which concluded only half the 18-29 demographic participated in the presidential election.
Eilish spoke directly to her Youtube following of 34.8 million in a video egging them on to vote Aug. 19.
“Silence is not an option and we cannot sit this one out,” Eillish said in her signature monotone. “We all have to vote like our lives and the world depend on it because they do. The only way to be certain of the future is to make it ourselves.”
Voting has become the latest social media trend since blackout Tuesday, which is a good thing but creates the idea that Gen Z is only voting to fit in. It would be interesting to talk about, but I digress.
We all need to vote.
Don’t vote for the sole purpose of wanting a new president; don’t vote for the sole purpose of following a trend; don’t vote for the sole purpose of supporting your celebrity crush; vote to exercise your constitutional right as a citizen in the United States.
Vote every election year.
Vote every primary.
Vote in local elections.
Please just vote.