The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Voting: Why it is important to college students

We all know what is coming up a week from today: the stupid elections again. Why should we, the “young voters,” care about it anyways? It is not like there is anything in this election that will directly affect us. It is more than clear that there are no actual issues that affect students on this November’s ballot. So why should we waste our time on voting?

While there isn’t any specific issue that we need to vote on, there is an enormous amount of issues that will affect us once these candidates are elected. Next Tuesday, we get a chance to re-elect our governor or, better yet, elect a new one. But whoever gets elected will have to make the decision on whether to increase our tuition, minimum wage, cost of health care in California and will affect countless other issues that are important to young people.

Have you ever wondered why senior citizens’ issues are important in the campaign of every candidate who runs for office? Well, it is simple: older people go out and vote. The only reason young people are not taken seriously is because we don’t use the power that has been invested in us: the stupid right to vote.

If you do not care about anything else, do not give up for the sake of our brothers and sisters who are dying around the world because our president decided that we should go to war and refuses to admit his wrongdoing.

Every candidate has those campaign promises to fix our “education problem” and “invest more in our kids,” but have you ever wondered why they do not follow through? Once again, they know that young people do not care if other people make decisions for them. We do not want our parents to tell us what to do, but we do not mind elected officials telling us what to do, how much tuition to pay, who to marry and how to act in public.

It has been a regular practice now for presidents and governors to cut the education funding in order for them to shrink their budget, but imagine what will happen if all the people take issue with the idea of cutting education funding. I can almost promise you elected officials will start looking at us differently and take us seriously in that situation. They might even have education as one of their main agenda items once they are elected. They might start campaigning for our vote, as opposed to always talking about us as if we do not exist.

Next Tuesday, all 435 House seats, 33 Senate seats and our own governor’s seat will be up for election. Imagine what kind of message we would send to our elected officials if we for once make an impact on the election.

This is only possible if we take 15 minutes out of our busy schedule and go out and vote. Most importantly, vote for someone you think will care about issues that will matter the most to us, the college students, not issues that matter to our beloved oil companies, defense contractors and huge corporations.

Now, I am not saying if we go out and vote next Tuesday that everything will be perfectly fine and every elected official will start caring about issues that matter to us as college students, but I think it is a great start.

Everything needs a starting point. For us college students, this year should be it. The work of civil right leaders didn’t pay off immediately, but it had to start somewhere. I think for us, this year could be that start, considering that issues that directly affect us will be on the ballot.

Finally, let’s not forget the elections at our own campus: the Associated Students elections that are taking place on Nov. 7 and 8.

A.S. has proposed doubling the Instructionally Related Activities fee from the current $15 per semester to $30 per semester, starting in fall 2007, with $5 annual increases until 2012, which would eventually make it $50 per semester. Also, A.S. is proposing an increase in its own fees from $72 to $87 per semester.

I would like to see the A.S. create a program that will help students buy and sell their used textbooks from and to their fellow students, as opposed to almost giving it to the bookstore for free. The A.S. needs to think about helping the general student body first before trying to increase its fees.

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