Wednesday, March 30, 2016


So I know we’re all of age here (except for the occasional young ambitious student or the year-skippers out there), but even as a senior, I find myself incredibly confused about the voting process. Where does one go to vote? Am I registered? Does my registration expire? How do I get an absentee ballot if I’m in state? Or out of state? What? .... Oh god. 

What’s strange is that we’re positioned at a college that likes to think of itself as pretty prestigious and on top of everything. (I mean, we’re literally on top of a hill here.) A few of my peers and I are rather surprised that no one is tabling for absentee ballots or reminding us that we need to vote, that we should be making a difference in this upcoming presidential election… or really any election. Where are our student organizations, the College Democrats, Democracy Matters or even the College Republicans? No one is sending out widespread public information on this campus to remind us that we should be the ones going out and voting. 

But when I take a moment to think about it… it doesn’t really surprise me. I’m not seriously sure people want to make the voting process easier or clearer at all. We’re also used to being far too busy on this campus, engulfed by this “Colgate bubble” to really pay attention to the outside world. But the “rest of the world” is still chugging along, with us right inside it. This bubble we’ve got is self-made and we need to pop it. Now.

It’s not even just within Colgate, the U.S. voting system as a whole isn’t all that clear either. With the internet, social media, unnecessary amounts of emails and even snail mail, why aren’t we being bombarded with more information, need I say CLARITY, about voting? Especially to the youth. If all the youth were voting, the primaries might look very different from what they look like now.

So in my realization that the primaries have begun for the Presidential election, I searched google for some sort of answer to the mysterious world of voting. And here’s the most helpful site I found…

This organization is actually set up to help get more people to vote, and students are one of their target demographics. They have voting deadlines and dates set up easily by state. They also have links to register to vote and to request an absentee ballot.

But so far, this is what the primaries look like. To me, it’s a little scary, and it looks like we need to get out there and shake it up. If you feel a little confused about who you might agree with, here’s a short quiz that might help you figure it out from the Washington Post. There is also a quiz here, at I Side With that may help. I Side With also has news and polls that you might be interested in looking at!

Last thing, the New York state primary is on April 19th and you can vote at the Hamilton Public Library downtown. Or you can sign up for an absentee ballot on the website that I mentioned earlier.

While I know it’s not everything it could be but it’s a start, so get on this website and seriously GO VOTE! 

 - Monica Hoh '16, Information Technology and Resources Intern

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