In a world where one vote could change the course of history, one could say every vote matters. Civic engagement can be defined as volunteering or voting for the greater good of your country. Making sure that we are all well informed on politics allows for more educated voting in the United States. According to the Census Bureau’s survey in 2018, the average voting range for people ages 18-24 was roughly 30 percent. The fact that less than half of the young population votes is dismal.
Most Marian students who are eligible to vote would not have been able to vote until the 19th Amendment was passed in 1920. For students of color, the date was pushed back to 1964 when the Voting Rights Act was passed. We all have a responsibility to vote, not only for ourselves, but for the millions of women before us who couldn’t.
The concept of civic engagement should be of utmost importance now more than ever, because our civil liberties are constantly being curbed in the name of obedience. We, as citizens, should want to participate in political activities that further the advancement of our country. We need to be more aware of what is going on.
This means going to local protests, city halls, and other government meetings. Social movements formed the way we see our country. There have been so many different social movements since our parents’ and grandparents’ adolescence.
This isn’t the America our parents grew up in.
We are allowed to choose our own political routes. We don’t have to follow in the political footsteps of our parents. Our world is becoming more and more accepting towards different political views. By doing things such as voting, volunteering at your mayor’s office and more, we can make our country a better place to live. We should study the people we want representing our country.
We shouldn’t want to live in a country where people feel like voting is a chore, we should feel excited to be able to have a say in the government. Politics, however, isn’t the only way to practice civic engagement. Things as simple as figuring out who your local government officers are, organizing events to motivate your neighborhood and volunteering at your local homeless shelter are all examples of civic engagement.
Examples of civic engagement at Marian are the tampon drive, Donuts for Diversity, Life Chain and so much more. Even joining a club is civic engagement. We can start improving our country by starting at Marian. The more girls who care about bettering our society, the better it will become.
Many young eligible voters don’t even know how to register. It’s as easy as going to the DMV, or doing it by mail or doing it online.
People should make sure to register within a month of their 18th birthday, as the primaries/caucuses are within months reach.
The end of our national anthem summarizes the attitude we should have with civic engagement, “the land of the free, and the home of the brave”. If we are more brave and push for more civic engagement, than we’re actively making our country more free. All it takes is to get informed, educated and involved.