Every month, I want to try and photograph six different people from the Black Hills Area. Accompanying the portraits, everyone will be asked the same question. This month's faces come from all over the Black Hills State University campus and the question is Do you vote, why or why not?
A senior studying biology education, Frankie says she has yet to vote. At the age of 22, she hasn't been keeping up with the politics.
"I haven’t voted at all because I am only 22. During the last presidential election, when I could vote, I just didn’t because I was only 18 and didn’t pay attention to anything. This year, I don’t think I’ll vote; I want to vote, but I know me and I’ll probably forget to vote. That’s usually why I don’t vote, I just forget.”
Ms. Ruth Moore can be found on the second floor of Jonas Hall on campus. Ruth is the secretary for the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences. Without hesitation, Ruth confirms that she exercises her right to vote.
"Yes, I do vote because it’s my right as a woman and I like to take part in that. We earned that right, so I want to take full advantage of it.”
Mathematics Education major Zachary is expected to graduate this year. The opposite of Ruth, Zachary jumped on the answer easily saying that it doesn't matter if he votes or not.
"No, just because, no matter who you vote for it always turns out someone will be mad at the other person.”
Rebecca works on the first floor of Woodburn Hall as a temporary information specialist in the Marketing and Communications department. Not keen on discussing politics, she shares that her passion is more in local politics rather than on a national level.
"I rarely vote for the presidential candidate because I usually don’t like any of them, but I always vote locally because I feel it’s very important to vote for the things that matter in the community. You can make more of an impact locally than you can nationally."
Dr. Jamalee (Jami) Stone
Dr. Stone has worked at BHSU for more than 10 years, and not once has she ever been asked for a quote she laughs. Jami is an associate professor for the School of Education. There was no doubt in her mind that voting is important.
She passionately answered the question saying,
"Absolutely I vote! We live in a democracy for one, and the reason why we have compulsory education is to have an informed society. If you don’t vote, I don’t believe you should have the opportunity to complain because change will never happen unless people take action, and voting is one way to do that."
Media and design assistant for the Marketing and communications department, Laurel shares her strong opinion on voting as well.
"I do vote. I think that’s a very important duty as a US citizen. It helps us to decide the direction that we would like for our country to go as a united people. Therefore, I really do think that everyone’s voice matters."
So, do you vote? Why or why not?
I believe that we need to vote, especially the young adults, because we are the future and we need to shape that future for the next generation. It is our responsibility to know what our children, grandchildren and children all over the country will be growing up in and what kind of situation we will leave them in. I also really love how Ruth adds the importance of voting as a woman. We fought for it for so many years, it is wrong to throw it away. That goes for everyone, our military fought for the freedom of a democracy and the freedom to vote, so it is in fact our duty and right to vote for what we believe is right.
What do you think?