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Want a Voice? Young Voters Can Write the Future


The day was June 12th, 2018. It was 7:56 am, and the sun was shining brightly in the sky. Everything felt so amazing, so perfect. I felt so light and so jovial as I walked over the dewy, green grass into the town hall. I was as happy as I possibly could have been. Today was going to be a good day because today would be my first time voting. 

I remember how elated I felt as my pen dragged against the paper ballot. This was the day I had been waiting for, for years. I could actually vote. I could finally have a say in how my government was run.

Unfortunately, some people my age do not share my enthusiasm about voting. A lot of young adults find voting impractical. They tend to say that they don't have time for it, that it is too hard. This affects the American political system in a negative, almost detrimental way.

Millennials make up over half of the United States population. We outnumber Gen X and Baby Boomer generations by nearly 20 million, according to the US Census Bureau. Democracy is based on a majority rules system, so whatever the majority says goes. This system crashes when the majority doesn't vote. 

In other words, if millennials don’t vote, America will be left with regressive politicians and policies. We will have virtually no control over our country. How do we fix this problem? The solution is rather simple.

We can take that control back if we actually vote. We can have a say in US politics if we actually speak up. So please, young people, register to vote. 

Lia Suleiman is a student at Gorham High School. She produced this piece during a Raise Your Voice Workshop sponsored by Maine Public and the Maine Writing Project.