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2016 Presidential Election

Students, Faculty Speak Out

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Voices of the American people will resonate throughout the country on Nov. 8 with each ballot that is signed and accounted for. This year’s infamous presidential election cycle has undoubtedly caused a stark and unnerving dissonance within the collective national body. What individual voters, whether it be their first or tenth time voting, hope to achieve by casting in their vote next week, is peace of mind that comes with knowing they made contribution to the overall sound of the choir.

However, this is not an easy task for most citizens, 81%, to be exact, who are dissatisfied with this year’s candidates. Students and first-time voters especially are having a seemingly difficult time deciding who and what they should vote for.

“I am really sad that this is my first year to vote because all of the choices are awful and I am scared,” senior Lauren Vaughn said. “I am scared for my life.”

The electoral debates were set in place in order to help voters find clarity about which candidate they like best, but apparently that did not work so well this year, as people’s disdain for both major party candidates worsened with each interruption.

“I turned the first debate off after fifteen minutes,” senior Johnathan Stinnett said. “I could not stand the interruptions, and the etiquette shown during the debate just was not there; between both candidates.”

Although a majority of student and first-time voters would agree that neither Trump nor Clinton quite fit the bill for who they want to see in the White House, voting is still a matter of utmost importance for those like senior Michael Bamberg.

“Voting is a civic duty,” Bamberg said. “People should generally be involved with the political process, at least to an extent. Voting is relatively simple and it is important in a democracy for the people to have a say in what goes on, so that the government can be more reflective of what their constituents think.”

To veteran voters like English teacher Angela Nichols, this election is just as, if not more, terrifying to watch unfold than it is for first timers.

“The American public have been brainwashed terribly,” Nichols said. “The propaganda this election is so bad that it scares me to think what will happen in the future because people have believed these things for so long.”

Due to the fact students and millennials as whole are generally having a difficult time choosing between our current presidential candidates, government/economics teacher Seth Rivard shares his wisdom with students about how to vote effectively.

“I want students to learn about the candidates, learn about all of the issues and what their stances are on them, and then vote for the person who most represents them, instead of voting for someone just because someone tells them to,” Rivard said. “That is not how the system is supposed to work.”

Even for those who feel as if their vote doesn’t matter, Nichols encourages eligible students to make their voice heard by voting anyway.

“Be active in the political process, because once young voters get complacent and say ‘oh, well my vote doesn’t count,’ well – maybe it doesn’t,” Nichols said. “The American voting system is not designed to act as a direct democracy, but I still believe that if you have your say, somehow it will be heard and helpful.”

Good luck to students voting for the first time on Tuesday, and may God help us all.

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The student news site of Joshua High School in Joshua, Texas
2016 Presidential Election