November 7, 2023 elections had much at stake with issues 1 and 2 at the center of the ballet. The issues covered the legalization of marijuana and the abortion. With much at stake it was important for every voice to be heard. I found myself wanting to participate in the general election not just for Issue 1 and 2 but also for the county and city changes that were being proposed. Tax levy’s, council members and mayor were also on the ballet.
The big question, what was it like voting for the first time as a young twenty-year-old? I started by researching and making sure I knew what was on the ballet ahead of time. I walked in prepared to cast my ballot with my decisions made, no hesitation at the polls.
As I pulled into the church parking lot I prepared my driver’s license and got out of my car. Walking in the doors of the church as I have many times before I couldn’t help but feel a slight twinge of nerves. I took my place in line and waited to reach the registration table. I walked up to the table and the gentleman seated before me took my name and address, he then smiled as he held my ID asking if this was my first time at the polls. With a nervous laugh I confirmed that it was. The man then with a chuckle asked if I wanted him to make an announcement to the room. As soon as he finished his question I assured him that it was not necessary.
I was given a card to take to the machine and then proceeded to cast my vote. As I walked to the station I took a moment to look around the room. To my surprise I was the youngest voter by my guess twenty years. Many of the voters were old enough to be my parents or grandparents. This was surprising to me as I hear many young adults around my age voice their opinions on important issues.
I left the polls with a sense of relief knowing that the thing I had been dreading to do was finally done. My experience voting and knowing that my voice was heard was a great feeling. I knew that I had done my part in making wanted changes.
As a young adult there are many times when I wonder if what I say is heard and if it even matters to those making the decisions. Participating in the election was an important thing to do and I encourage those who have not yet voted for the first time to participate in the next election.