The full article is published here.

Leading up to the U.S. midterm elections, UNAVSA reached out to members of our community to offer reasons as to why they vote. Some reasons include:

Growing up in the U.S. presented me with both privileges and challenges. I come from a country that is known to be a superpower, and a land with an abundance of opportunity. Because of that hopeful reputation, many immigrants like my parents, chased the ‘American dream” wanting success and freedom. However, there is still much that needs to changed when it comes to equality. Resources in supporting younger cultures such as Southeast Asians still need advocates and voices. Education, healthcare, and social issues state that we are a marginalized group not equal. I vote because legislation and laws affect my immediate community and without speaking up for rights, the uphill battle gets harder for those after my generation. I vote because I believe in love, justice, and equality. I’m tired of waiting for change, and believe change starts with citizens like you, and I.”

It’s important that anyone who is eligible to vote makes a conscious effort to register, and vote in all of their elections and on any of referendums, proposals, etc., that they feel is relevant to their community and to the well-being of others. “Vote or Die,” including its South Park parody has always struck me since a kid- as melodramatic as it sounds, there have been elected officials, representatives, and senators trying to impede on the liberties of marginalized communities, and I believe we as youth leaders need to send a message to them that these policies are not okay.

“Voting is one of the smallest things, but one of the most impactful things you can do to enact change, especially at the local level. Laws and policies affect your everyday life and voting can affect direct change in those laws and policies. There are injustices happening everywhere and being complacent can and will lead to worse outcomes. Making our society better involves a lot of effort, whether it’s calling elected officials or participating in advocacy organizations, and we need to be putting in that effort. We need to be practicing civic engagement.”


Posted on

July 31, 2018