DON’T WANT TO VOTE? DO IT ANYWAY, IT’S YOUR DUTY

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Carla Wintersgill

Editor-in-Chief

When I was a kid, I was obsessed with the idea of voting. I was so mad that I couldn’t and would argue with countless adults about why kids should be able to vote too.

I thought everyone I knew would be so excited to turn 18 and have the right to vote, but instead most people I knew were apathetic about voting.

By the time the polls closed out west, the election had been pretty much decided in the East. They figured that their one measly vote couldn’t make a difference.

They’re not the only ones who feel that way. Voter turnout for electors aged 18-24 is shockingly low. In the 2006 general election, only 44 per cent bothered voting. In 2004, it was even lower at a dismal 37 per cent.

Turnout isn’t decreasing because voters are opting out of the system, it’s going down because new voters aren’t even bothering to opt in.

This isn’t going to be one of those lectures about why it’s so important to exercise your right to democracy and shape your country’s destiny, etc.

This is me telling you to get off your lazy asses and go do your civic duty. It’s not hard to vote, Elections Canada bends over backwards to make it easy on you. You’re also legally allowed time off work to go vote.

I don’t care if you have no interest in politics. Go in and spoil your ballot.

Want to vote but have no clue about any of the parties? That’s easily solved. Check out our Toronto Centre election guide on page 7 for the scoop on the candidates.

If you don’t live in this riding, other websites can point you in the right direction. The Elections Canada website is a good starting point (www.elections.ca) so is Apathy is Boring, a non-partisan organization dedicated to getting out the youth vote (www.apathyisboring.com).

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