Mid-term elections are coming up next month. This particular election is going to be quite interesting. The popular opinion is that American voters are extremely agitated with the status quo and there’s an expectation we’ll see major changes in our nation’s capital as a result.
While it’s unknown at this point who the winners and losers will be, what will be interesting is the conversation (or lack thereof) about voter turnout. For all the media talk about people being angry, change not happening fast enough, voices not being heard, there doesn’t seem to the same level of conversation about voter enthusiasm.
According to voter records, the average turnout of people of voting age has been roughly 40 percent over the past ten years. Just think about that for a second. If the voters are equally split between the two major parties, that means our political leadership is determined by about 20 percent of the voting population.
We talk about this all the time at work. If you want to change something, don’t sit on the sidelines – get involved. The same applies here. If you want to see change, get involved. It could mean joining a committee, answering a survey, or volunteering at a local organization. On Election Day it means going out and voting. Or signing up to get a mail ballot.
Your voice or vote doesn’t get heard if you don’t participate. What does get heard are the voices of the people who did vote. Who may or may not share your opinion.
I know Election Day is a work day or a school day. It might be cold or raining where you are. You have family, friends, and loved ones who want and need your attention. I’m not here to tell you HOW to vote…just to ask that you exercise your constitutional right and VOTE. There are people in this world who don’t get such a privilege.
Regardless of who wins, history will be made. And this is your chance to be a part of it.
No matter where you are, think of Election Day as a day to let people know what you support and what you want to see changed. Be willing to do your part by voting or volunteering your time to make things better.
Organizations! For a state-by-state guide on Time Off to Vote Laws, check out this chart
Lifehacker posted a great piece on the easiest way to find your polling place
If you’re reading this on an Android phone or iPhone, Google’s Election Center offers mobile assistance in finding polling locations.
It can be hard to stay on top of everything that’s going on. I’ve become a big fan of The Skimm eNewsletter. I like that I can get a quick read on what’s happening around the world in terms of government, politics, and the issues. And the writing is very casual and conversational.
Image captured by Sharlyn Lauby at the Newseum after speaking at the SHRM Annual Conference in Washington, DC9