"Who's bright idea was that to hand a bunch of stupid kids...Wait your turn like the rest of us and wait in line behind the rest of us old timers."
No matter what list is looked at, politics is usually one of the three topics you are told to shy away from and not bring up in public. Maybe it's statements like the quote above that keep people, especially young people, from wanting to get engaged with the political process. However, ignoring it doesn't make it go away and you won't find a seat at the table if you are waiting in the back. Stepping forward, learning the process, discussing the issues, and getting engaged is how you make a true difference in the political process no matter what your age is.
That is why Young Leaders of Northeast Indiana developed their YLNI The Vote programming. YLNI has no interest in telling you who to vote for or endorsing one candidate over another. We simply aim to break down some of the barriers that might stand between you and the political process. We aim to provide information and opportunities for you to learn more about the candidates that are on the ballot. Doubt, uncertainty, fear, and apathy are all very real feelings that people have before stepping into the voting booth. Feeling that can often be overcome quickly through education and engagement.
I want to let you in on a dirty little secret about the local political environment. Many local elected officials want more engagement from the younger demographic. Believe it or not they have a strong passion to see our community prosper and realize that we and our kids are the future of the community. They need people to get civically engaged by becoming educated on the process, applying to sit on community boards and commissions, and yes even running for office.
So please don't wait your turn and don't wait in line behind the rest. Pull up a chair and get engaged. The Primary is May 7th and early voting is already available. It was reported that Allen County’s primary election turnout in 2018 was only about 15%! We can do better than this and our community deserves more engagement from its electorate. All the information you need to vote early, by mail or look up your election day polling location can be found here:
Vote Early! - https://www.allencounty.us/election-board/1223
Vote by Mail! - https://www.allencounty.us/election-board/1224
Find Your Election Day Polling Location! - http://www.acimap.us/election.html
One last secret for you, we would love to be able to do more with our YLNI The Voteprogramming for future primary elections, the upcoming general election, and beyond to cover races outside of Allen County, but we need your help. If you are ready to pull up a seat to the adults table, reach out to us to get started. Just email us direct at the firstname.lastname@example.org to start the conversation. No need to be intimidated or question your qualifications as our focus is breaking down barriers and improving the availability of information on the candidates.