As municipal elections draw closer and closer, time grows shorter for voters to register and mail in their absentee ballots.
Municipal elections put people into positions that affect our everyday life. The people elected are faces we see on the street. From school board to district attorneys, this election will determine the political course of our hometowns.
This time last year, America was in a frenzy as it prepared for the 2020 presidential election.
During the month leading up to the 2020 presidential election, The Slate had advertisement’s encouraging voter registration and participation. For three weeks last October, The Slate had a voting ad that spanned the length of its front page.
As November approaches, I am worried that voters will not have the same fervor for municipal elections. This vote may not look as flashy and feel as high stakes as a presidential election, but they are just as important.
The changes and improvements we want in our daily lives can be determined during these elections.
Right now, in my hometown of York, a battle over the Central School Board is raging. The current board banned several books about racism and racial justice, upsetting many people. A group of people running for school board have made reversing this ban one of the core pieces in their campaign.
What youth in the Central School District will be allowed to read in their classrooms will be decided during municipal elections.
This is the battle of just one county in the state, so how many others are raging as we creep closer to the Nov. 2 finish line?
Issues from parks and recreation to issues of social justice are up in the air right now. Giving into the myth of “my vote doesn’t matter” or “my voice is just one in thousands, it won’t count” only serves to hurt our communities.
That said, there are some who refrain from voting because of voter suppression or obstacles to physically getting to the polls, and other socially and politically complicated reasons.
For those who do not vote because their singular vote feels weak, I implore you to reconsider. One voice alone doesn’t win an election, but multiple voices do. Seek out others who are working toward the goals that you align with. Few things in life are accomplished by a singular person’s effort and willpower.
You might be surprised by how many other people will vote the same way as you. In fact, just check out some of your local campaigns to see the number of people who have pledged to back them.
No matter your part, get out there and vote. If your vote doesn’t end up on top, that’s not the end. While it is vitally important for Americans to exercise their right to vote, there are other ways we can contribute to democracy after the ballots are cast.
One of the most interactive ways is to volunteer time and help out a local political campign.
You can also read up about current political issues and debates. Then you can make informed decisions and engage in structured discussions.
But for now, I hope you make it to the polls.
Editors Note: The author is related to an individuall running for the Central School District school board.