Posts Tagged ‘vote’

The Young Politica: How to Vote During Hurricane

We Lower-Manhattanites are a scrappy bunch of people. We are starving artists, college students, writers, and Wall Street bankers. This past week, after Hurricane Sandy hit, all of lower Manhattan was out of power for days.

I am writing this after being evacuated from my dorm and living out of NYU’s Kimmel Center for days—a building that offered food, shelter, and power to students. For those not seeking refuge outside of their ‘South of Power’ apartments, I’ve heard stories of raw ramen for dinner and pilgrimages north for cell phone service. Luckily, power resumed for much of my neighborhood recently, so I have a bed to sleep in again.

Rather than thinking about where I would be relocated after the storm on Monday, my concerns shifted to how Sandy would affect the upcoming election. Perhaps my priorities need adjusting.

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The Young Politica: Will Young People ‘Rock the Vote’ Like They Did in 2008?

I like to think that voting is a trendy thing for young Americans. We see it as a rite of passage and a chance to impact the world. I like to think that come November 4th, some of us make it a point to show off our ‘I Voted’ sticker, like it’s the status symbol for the concerned citizen. But in reality, voting isn’t that easy when you’ve never done it before and it takes a lot of responsibility to be informed enough to make an educated voting decision.

Rock the Vote is a nonprofit that focuses on trying to engage young people in the political process. One of their main objectives: getting young people to vote. In 2008, the organization was at a new peak. The advancement of technology which promoted voting, an overall desire for reform in the White House, and an increase in the amount of celebrity candidate endorsements, all of this led to one of the highest youth voter turnouts in American history.

This year is different. After four years of promise, some young people are not seeing change.

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The Young Politica: Will Your Vote Count? How to Make Sure Even if You Vote Absentee

Growing up, I always asked Mom lots of questions. Questions like “What does ‘superfluous’ mean?” and “What’s an endocrinologist?” were common, and quite commonly, Mom replied:

“Look it up in the dictionary.”

Nowadays, I still have questions. They’re a little more difficult for Mom to answer, so her reply is more like:

“Look it up on the Internet.”

It’s very easy to give up on answering a question when the answer is not easily found. From questions in an exam, to solving a problem with university administration, to learning how to vote, I’ve found myself at bottomless pits of questions that don’t have answers on SparkNotes.com or FAQ pages.

I was in this predicament when I attempted to vote through an absentee ballot. I didn’t know how to get a hold of a ballot or where to vote or what to send. I was clueless! I expected that all of the information would be readily available on one government website, which would make it easier for college students.

I was wrong.

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WHY WOMEN NEED TO LEARN HISTORY’S ELECTION POWER LESSON

Like many women who identify themselves as feminists, Kathleen Turner and I are divided in our presidential candidate pick. We spent 18 months collaborating on her just-released memoir, Send Yourself Roses: Thoughts on My Life, Love, and Leading Roles.

During that time, we talked about politics quite a bit, because she sees herself as an activist as well as an actor. I rolled my eyes last summer when she announced to me that she’d decided to support Barack Obama and was going stumping for him in North Carolina’s August heat.

I thought it a naïve choice, but Obama had the good sense to invite her to a meeting with a few prominent women and had asked directly for her support. She’d been impressed, as I was when I first met him soon after his 2004 election to the U.S. Senate. And like many people, I was thrilled that the Democratic candidate lineup looked more like America, whereas Republicans were still mired in cookie-cutter white male political hegemony. Nevertheless, it seemed at the time that Hillary Clinton was surging to an unassailable lead for her party’s nomination, so I didn’t need to press too hard on Kathleen to join me in supporting her.

REALITY SHIFTS AND “TRUTH” WITH IT

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Super Tuesday 5PM

For the last few days, the internet has been buzzing with impassioned presidential endorsements by feminists, many of whom have been in or even leading the movement for decades and others who are the bright young voices of the present and the future. This extraordinary piece of cultural criticism by Robin Morgan is my personal favorite.

Seems the women of America have found their voices concerning whom they do and don’t support, thank you very much.

So where then does Andrew Sullivan yes, the conservative (though gay and hiv positive—put those together with “conservative” for an amazing oxymoron) pundit get off in his thinly veiled misogynist attempt to instruct feminists on how to vote?

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