It was 8:30 p.m. on Sunday and I logged onto Facebook. I had already known to expect USG campaigning to begin at 8 p.m. that night, but those who were not previously warned must’ve been in for a shock. Almost every campaign group – down to senators from each program – had created a Facebook event and sent out invitations encouraging students to vote.
I understand that the most important part of an election process is informing the public. I really do. We see this every four years with our nation’s presidential elections as well as our local governor elections. It’s vital that the community understands what each political party believes regarding current issues, what actions they plan to take if elected, what they ask of the public, etc. Those who are ignorant often vote for a representative they know nothing about, and might regret it later on.
However, I also believe that there should be a limit to campaigning. It can be seen not only during national elections, but with our own student government elections this past week, that bombarding the public in an attempt to win can be overwhelming. Constantly hearing about who is the “right” person to vote for, or seeing different forms of marketing in every part of campus, can make it harder for people to decide who they actually agree with. I know that personally, I had reached a point where I temporarily considered not voting at all.
For those individuals who have reached that point where I was, I encourage you to stay strong. I know it’s annoying to be surrounded by students running for a position who will not give up until they have your “guaranteed” vote. But at the same time, these students could potentially be making changes next year that will affect us all. It’s important to give them each a few minutes to explain their position, so you are more aware of what might be to come. Not only this, but you will be at a better place to let your voice be heard when voting for who you agree with.
As for those running to be a part of the student government, I really hope this fire lasts. As frustrating as it can get sometimes, it’s also nice to see that you all care so much about being able to create change. I’ve heard a few speeches that I won’t forget from students who can relate to challenges we face, and plan to change them. However, it is election week. I hope that you will not lose this initiative as the weeks go on. If, and when, you are elected, I hope that you will continue to actually maintain communication with the student body and make a difference.
So, whether you vote for Nick and Emily, Kevin and Andrea, or Jake and Melissa, please vote tomorrow. I know it can get annoying, but it’s important that we students support our classmates and have a say in the student government that will form. Learn more about each presidential slate, as well as the senators running alongside them. Vote for who you agree with, and let’s hope that they will not disappoint us as election week comes to an end.