Seniors Cast First Votes

Seniors+Cast+First+Votes

Over the past few weeks The Bark, RVHS’s high school online newspaper,  has followed the events leading up to this year’s 2020 election and the return of ABC News to the high school to cover election education in public schools.   After the mock election staged at the high school, the seniors who are eighteen years of age are ready to cast their real votes in this most anticipated election.   The Bark interviewed a group of politically diverse students from Mr. Blane Gold’s senior history class.  Students Noah Anderson, Gabby Dinger, and Quinlan Griffin all openly expressed their opinions. With insight from a few young voters’ minds, we can see what they are thinking when it comes to this new voting experience.

Anderson, Dinger, and Griffin all claim they plan on voting in the election. Now, given, voting is still a choice for citizens. Voting is optional and not required by any law or standard, so why would these students choose to vote? 

Dinger: “…I just want to have the power to determine my future and for people my age because a lot of my classmates aren’t old enough to vote. So if I, like, stand up for those who aren’t old enough to vote, then I feel like I’m serving a purpose.” 

Anderson: “I want to have a part in whoever is the next president, and I want to have a say. If everyone thinks ‘well, one vote’s not going to do anything’ then nobody would get elected.” 

Griffin: “It’s always important for young people to vote, especially in this current situation.” 

 

Another topic of discussion was how these individuals plan to approach submitting their vote. A question thrown in out of curiosity was whether they knew where and what time they were voting.   All of them did, but the life of a high school student can be tasking at times, making time around their schedule seemed to be the only issue.   

Dinger: “I have my location and time. It all depends on how school goes and practices and all that, but I’ll definitely make it there.” 

 

Going deeper into the process of voting, would these students choose a straight party ticket or cross party lines for candidates? 

Anderson: “I’m not doing that (straight ticket).  I’m just doing research on who I like the most and then voting for them.” It seemed they were all in agreement to avoid voting completely by party lines.

 

Many young adults tend to break away from their parents’ ideologies and form their own opinions as they mature, for our seniors this reflects the way they will decide to fill out their ballots when voting. One similarity they still have with their parents, though, is their motivation to vote.   

Dinger: “I think just getting to be the age to be able to have the power in who they want our future leader to be. This makes me want to go and vote.” 

Anderson: “Knowing I could help be a part of deciding the next leader of our country.” Quinlan Griffin: “Just having the freedom to vote once you turn 18…like she (Gabby) said,  it’s empowering to be able to voice your opinion.”   The three students seem to care about the future of our country, and they have accepted the responsibility to protect its outcome through voting.

 

When it comes to elections, there are always candidates commonly overlooked. Some third party candidates fall into that category. We asked if they had considered any third party candidates.  

Noah Anderson: “No, because they’re not going to win, so I might as well not put my vote towards them…right now the chances of them (third party candidates) winning is pretty low.” So, maybe these candidates aren’t overlooked. Voters just don’t want to waste their valuable votes on candidates that are bound to lose.

 

Lastly, we wanted to know whether students took into account the local elections that are not getting as much media attention. 

Griffin: “Yes. Voting for our governor is very important because, on a day-to-day basis, he affects us more than the President…” 

 

Whether you are still in high school or you are retired from your duties, voting will always matter.   The fate of our country was designed to be in the hands of The People. Our seniors here at RVHS seem to be taking voting matters into their own hands with careful thought and preparation. 

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