‘Rite Idea: Take Action

Voting isn’t the only way to be an active citizen.

There has never been more at stake. The last four years have painted a dire picture of the United State’s future, but four days from now we have the chance to put our trajectory back on track toward progress.

The question to ask yourself before Nov. 3 is: Do you care? Do you care about the cries of Black Americans to be accepted in their own country? Do you care about the 250,000 lives lost to COVID-19 and the hundreds of thousands that may follow? Do you care about the integrity of our democratic system and the right for every citizen to vote?  

If the answer is yes, there is only one solution: Elect Joe Biden. It is easy for apathy to catch hold of we who cannot vote. Disappointment and frustration are inevitable for all those who cannot participate in the electoral process. Fortunately, everyone has a voice in this election. For the next four days, do everything you can to enact justice on Nov. 3.

If you’re 17 or older, you can work at a polling location. And, while we are in a dangerous time because of the increasing spread of coronavirus, if you are able to you should be a poll worker to help ensure people’s right to vote. The Trump campaign has recruited a coalition of poll watchers. While historically both parties have used poll watchers to ensure fair voting practices at the polls, people are worried that Trump’s poll watchers will instead suppress voters. Baylor University professor Patrick Flavin said that we should be wary of poll watchers “potentially intimidating voters”  through challenging ballots and the eligibility of voters. Being a poll worker is essential to a fair election in 2020. Without poll workers assisting voters and stopping intimidation, elections are impossible. The Poll Hero Project helps recruit poll workers in any location.  

Throughout the next four days, we can help from our bedrooms, risk-free, with only our phones. When you volunteer to phone-bank, you call people in swing states and help them find a voting plan. Volunteerism is essential in grassroots campaigns. The Joe Biden website provides a phone-banking system, as well as campaigns specified towards important swing states, such as the Florida Coordinated Campaign or Vote Save America. The Ohio Democratic Party is running an East Side Cleveland Thursday phone bank tonight.  Most people don’t answer and of those who do, most are rude and don’t care about the work you are doing. But if even one person you call answers and listens to you, you have made a difference. 

And when you reach those mythical, undecided voters — the polite ones — you can engage in a thoughtful conversation and perhaps help that person decide to vote for Biden. 

Not all pro-voting actions have to be organized. Who are the people in your life who are forgetful, or think their votes don’t matter? Call them. Make it your duty to ensure that they vote. Help them find the ways to vote early, vote by mail, or find their polling locations. 

Don’t let your age prevent you from helping preserve our democracy. Choose at least one way before Nov. 3 to assist even one voter. Act as if our futures depend on the outcome of this election.

Because they do.


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