Voting as a Democratic Privilege

Voting+as+a+Democratic+Privilege

Graphic by Raag Venkat

Davis Gutow

Last week, I had the unique opportunity to utilize my voice in a way that I had never done before. I became a participant in our democracy and felt like a true citizen of the United States for the first time.

As I approached the voting polls with my mom, I could feel lots of excitement rush throughout my body. People were protesting outside of the venue for both Biden and Trump. When I handed my ID to the person who would soon direct me to my voting station, the man asked if I was a first-time voter. I responded with an enthusiastic yes.

The man yelled, “We have a first-time voter, folks; we have a first-time voter.”

The other voters at the polling location applauded and hollered. I was ecstatic to cast my ballot. After speaking with other seniors, I learned they were also greeted with kindness and excitement. Being a first-time voter has never been so important. Four years ago, I think it is fair to say the voter turnout was disappointing, to say the least. Voting is a right that every American has and should use. It’s something that I believe is taken for granted far too often. However, I am optimistic about the future of voting, particularly for young voters.

I have seen many of my peers encourage each other to vote if eligible. I am confident that many, if not all, of the eligible voters, cast a ballot the October. And for the seniors that were not eligible to vote, I have still seen them emphasize voting to friends. The voting culture at Greenhill is one that I hope continues for years to come. It not only a fundamental right but a chance to be a part of something bigger than ourselves.