I Won't Sleep Outside For a Phone, But I Will Stand In Line To Vote

5 years ago

With less than a month until the election and only a few days until the voter registration deadline, convincing people to vote is every candidate's goal.

According to an article published by USAToday, there are 90 million eligible voters who will not take part in this year's election. They just don't see the value in it. I, on the other hand, see it as an honor. The longest I've ever stood in line at the polls was about three hours. On November 3, 1998, I had the pleasure of voting in my first election on my 18th birthday. I went straight from school to the polls just as excited as I could be. When I finished they gave me my "I'm a Georgia Voter" sticker. That was it, I was official. In my mind I'd made history.

What people fail to realize is that it took two amendments to allow me the right to vote. So it's not a privilege I take lightly.

The 15th amendment gave blacks (men only) the right to vote in 1870, but what about the women? It wasn't until 50 years later that women, especially black women, became eligible to vote via the 19th amendment. Even after these amendments we could not easily vote. Grandfather clauses and poll taxes still kept us from the polls. So when people are willing to sleep outside for a new gadget or sale, but don't find it equally important to vote, it really ticks me off. You can debate Apple vs. Android but have no clue about the candidates platforms. Wake up people! 

Kanye West said it best in his song "Never Let Me Down": "You can't make it to ballots to choose leadership, but you can make it to Jacob's [jeweler] and to the dealership..."

At some point I hope America really does wake up. Be heard! As an African-American woman there are too many people who fought for my voice. Where will I be on November 6? You damn right...VOTING!

Credit: Kristen_A Flickr

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