Voting isn’t enough: try political volunteering


Sam Coats

If one can’t vote, there’s still plenty of stuff one can do to affect the election.

There’s been a lot of humdrum around campus about the election. Who should control Congress? Our governorship? What about those nifty ballot propositions?

But what’s perhaps even more pressing is the lack of humdrum among some students, an apathy towards the event that will affect our lives over the next two years more than any other. And there’s one driving reason for this: most of us can’t vote. So what are we supposed to do?

The answer is simple: volunteer.

Graph By: Sam Coats

Wow, you say. Volunteer? Jeez. I don’t even have time to finish all my schoolwork. How am I supposed to knock doors for candidates when I can barely study for Pacula’s Calculus test.

However, it isn’t as simple as it may seem. Volunteering for political campaigns isn’t just running around and knocking on people’s doors. It can be much more rigorous work , but also much less time-consuming and possibly even fun. In fact, nowadays, you can do plenty of campaigning just on your cell phone.

It’s as easy as this: Find a campaign you like. Go to their website, and click whatever massive button they have put to entice you to volunteer for them. Usually, when you’re signing up, there will be a couple of options for things you can do. Some of the ones most popular with high schoolers are phone and text banking, which are exactly what you would imagine them to be: calling and texting voters to talk to them about your cause. Some people like to get together in groups to do this. Some people like to just do it while they chill out in their house. Most of the time you can do either. It doesn’t matter — the impact is the same regardless.

Yes, if you want to, you can go out and knock doors, or plant yard signs, or drive the elderly to the polls. But it’s just as easy to talk to voters from your own house. And you can accomplish more —far more— than you couldn’t just voting, even if you aren’t old enough to vote for yourself.