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Why I Vote

There are lots of reason why you should be voting tomorrow. The economy, education, immigration, civil rights, marriage equality, unemployment, and if you’re in California you might be voting to legalize marijuana. Or not…

While I do consider all of those things a big part in why I’ll be casting my vote tomorrow, there is one reason that remains the foundation for my undying commitment to voting in each and every election that I’ve experienced since turning 18.

Each time I vote in any election whether it be a presidential, local, or midterm election (such as tomorrow’s), I consider it my way of commemorating the 19th amendment, the Woman Suffrage Movement Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which gave women full voting rights in 1920. The women’s suffrage movement was one of the most dedicated and diligent suffrage movements in history. I’ve never taken for granted how much those women put themselves on the line to simply earn the right to vote.

I was raised in a politically minded household. My grandma was old school and as each one of the grandkids approached voting age she would always inquire as to the status of our voter registration, especially when I, being the oldest girl, neared my 18th birthday. She felt that though it was everyone’s duty to vote, it was especially important for women. The idea that women’s suffrage would be taken for granted by the simple act of not voting seemed absurd.

It still does.

So, of course, I registered when I was 17 and lucky for me the first big election after my 18th birthday was a presidential election. But as I stepped into my old junior high school gymnasium that crisp November morning to vote in my first election, I asked myself does my vote REALLY matter? Will my lowly little 18-year-old girl voice REALLY make a difference? As it turned out, it did.

The next day my choice for President won four more years in the White House. Also that next day my grandma sent me a newspaper article she’d clipped from the San Francisco chronicle, titled “Women Made the Difference.”

It stated that for the first time since women had won the right to vote they had elected the President of the United States. He did not win the male vote that year, he won the female vote. And since women had the majority of votes that year, it was women who decided the election.

My first election was also a pretty big first for the women’s suffrage movement as well. I’m always proud to have been a part of that moment and I still have that article in my hope chest today.

So don’t forget tomorrow to vote. And when you do, give thanks to the women who gave so much just so your voice could be heard.

  • clc408

    I have already voted. I'm happy to have the right and grateful to the efforts of the women who struggled for it.

  • @ymmat83

    I will vote!!!

  • Tina Taylor

    I will be voting and i hope it counts

  • Timbo

    Haha, oh lordy, not another Femiwhiner :D

    Be sure to keep in mind that the women of that era were also responsible for the abhorrent abomination, and eventual abysmal failure, known as the 18th Amendment. Y’know, that pesky Prohibition Amendment (the one that was repealed by the 21st amendment after it tanked like the Hindenburg).

    On the surface, to those with crossed eyes and unibrows, it appears to be an amendment that was meant for the “good of the country” and “for the children.”

    However, the result of that amendment gave rise to the Al Capones of that day, organized crime waves and wars, corrupt and bought off police precincts, higher prices of alcoholic consumables, no change in domestic violence and even increases both at home and in the streets and a stark refusal to acknowledge human nature as it exists in THIS reality. Way to go gals; keep on protecting us to death :)!

    Please refrain from patting yourself on the back when 1) You had NOTHING to do with passing the 19th amendment, and 2) You fail to provide a full historic timeline that also includes events that tarnished the good name of the Civil Rights movement. It’s insulting.

  • Carrie Conley

    Yes…I voted early….A lot of people fought and died for the right to vote….I vote because of that….You cant believe anything the candidates say on the commercials…

  • Jeff

    I planned on voting. I have been unable to get to the polls.

  • Sophia

    Jeff, I hope you get to the polls. hopefully someone will help you out.
    you could call your local democratic office and they might give you a ride…

    in the future, you can register as absentee and vote from the luxury of your home. just make sure you put enough postage!

  • won

    I vote because it goes along with something that is very important to me in my day to day life. I appreciate having a voice and being able to speak out. This is another way I can do that.

  • Cate

    I voted! even on the local stuff

  • Jennifer

    I voted today!!

  • Julie

    I do not know enough about the election to vote intelligently, therefore, I am not voting this time:)

  • Lisa M

    I voted it is improtant to teach our kids

  • Melissa

    i didnt vote because i am not registered and live in a different state than i am considered a resident of (military spouse).

  • Pat

    I voted because it’s my civic duty

  • addrienne mertens

    yup i voted! wipe out! woohoo! no compromise! obamas agenda is wrong for Americans, they have spoken! we will be in the car but not in back! Enemies you say, and you want compromise..hehe

  • Frank Kerner

    I feel that voting is important for everyone! That's why i did it

  • shenais

    if you don't vote then you don't get to complain- or even voice your opinion! you need to participate in the process!

  • Dawn S.

    Of course I vote, I vote in every election, it is my duty as an American. And shenais is right, if you don't vote you have no right to complain!

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  • Jolynn R.

    My Husband and I vote by mail. We vote early and just send it in, no long lines.

  • Aisling

    I always vote and I love to go to the polling place to do so. I too always remember the women who suffered so much to provide us with that right. My granddaughter turned 18 in July, registered to vote, and voted proudly for the first time yesterday. (I think all her candidates lost ;-( , but hopefully it will go better next time.)

    • andy

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  • Mary M.

    I voted and so did my daughter and my son-inlaw.

  • Julie Hawkins

    I voted early–I appreciate our system and I want my voice heard!

  • Suzanne Lewis

    I did not vote. I am registered in another county. Not an excuse, but it's the truth.

  • Susan Smith

    I voted by mail

  • Gianna

    I voted.. just like every election :)

  • Buddy Garrett

    I voted but I have never been more disgusted with all the negative campaigning than I have this year. I am wondering if it matters. I have heard people say all politicians are the same. It seems like they are. When I see people with good intentions smeared and the quality of people elected it is discourgaing. Yes I know it is only politics .

  • S Carter

    I voted. I vote every time for any and every election. It is a hard won right and I want to exercise it. Also I can't complain if I didnt do my part!!

  • Joanne Schultz

    Yup, I voted! My rule is if you don't vote, you can't complain!

  • Barbara Wright

    Yes, I voted. I find it sad that, in this day and age, I need to vote AGAINST people and not FOR people. It's all a battle of the parties and gaining control, and that's more important than actually helping the country.

  • justine

    I didn't vote and I know people will be very mad about that but I think politics is a huge circus so I don't care. If it was a serious thing and not just a mud slinging competition than I would care but I doubt things will ever change :( I mean look at this whole Obama mess, and just a few months ago he was the talk of the town! Lame.

  • Romina

    I voted!

  • ashley

    i voted

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