What voting means for the class of 2023

Mahnoor Ahmad, Editor-in-Chief

When we were children we used to proudly wear our parents’ “I Voted” stickers after each election, but did we know why they voted? As high school is soon coming to an end for the class of 2023, this means that some seniors were eligible to vote during the midterm elections on Nov 8. Apart from general elections and by-elections, midterm election refers to a type of election where the people can elect their representatives and other subnational officeholders in the middle of the executive’s terms. 

While some students believe that their individual vote doesn’t hold much significance to an election’s overall outcome, others feel passionate about the importance of voting.

First-time voter Ryder Walent, a senior, believes his voice matters. 

“I chose to vote because I wanted to participate in our government and participate in possibly the most important governmental activity,” said Walent. “I wanted to make my voice heard and to feel like I made a difference in our country’s government.”

Some voters, such as senior Ana Trigueros, were eager to put their votes behind specific issues or candidates.

“Abortion protection and representation are extremely important to me,” said Trigueros. “I voted to put more protection for my reproductive rights and voted for Alex Padilla, who is the first Latino Senator in California.” 

Of the students who voted, 57% decided to mail in their ballot, while the remaining 43% voted in person. Senior Manuel Rodriguez decided to fill out his ballot at home.

“I mailed in my ballot because it became available before the polls,” said Rodriguez. “It was the most convenient and fast option for me.” 

Because the United States is considered a representative democracy, senior Tatum Herrera believes she needs to vote. 

“The whole reason for a democracy is for the people to decide what happens in our country and if people do not vote, then there really is not democracy,” said Herrera.  

Senior Isabella Vargas said she would consider voting if she was more informed about the candidates. 

“I don’t really know anything, so I might vote if I knew what I was voting for,” said Vargas. 

If you’re eligible to vote in the near future, some resources to educate yourself for the next election are watching the news to hear candidates’ stances, researching propositions beforehand, or in a last-second scenario, pulling out your phone while voting to look up information. It’s legal as long as there’s no videotaping or communicating with anyone.