Election day 2020 is a vote for your future liberty

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Vote, Your liberty depends on it

Election 2020 during a pandemic

In 2016, Donald Trump flippantly attacked media, his opponents, anyone who came against his word, and honestly many laughed in the beginning. He’s going to build a what? He grabbed her by the where? He made fun of a disabled man? There were “very fine people on both sides?” His incessant and divisive rhetoric fueled racism, division, and bigotry, empowering people in their hatred towards others, especially people of color.

In Pennsylvania, Trump won the Electoral College by only 44,292 votes in 2016

Now we find ourselves amidst a global pandemic, outrageous unemployment rates, a country bound together by a disease that doesn’t bow to partisanship, and a nation on the brink of a civil war amid political division. A recent campaign email released by the Trump administration calls on donors to join the “Trump Army” to fight the “liberal mob.” I had to look it up on Snopes to believe it.

Kurt Pfeiffer, educator
“I have a dialogue with them on the issues,” said Kurt Pfeiffer, educator. “It’s especially important to do that with people that don’t think their vote counts.”

Today we face racial injustice, senseless gun violence, police brutality, and riots clouding the peaceful protests of those hurting. There has never been such a time as this to exercise your right to vote.

This could have been avoided, couldn’t it have? If only we had all voted. We got comfortable, didn’t we? Obama’s America wasn’t racist, we thought. Hillary couldn’t possibly lose, we mused.

You didn’t think your vote counted, did you? In Pennsylvania, Trump won the Electoral College by only 44,292 votes. To put this in perspective, that’s less than 3% of the population in Philadelphia, or roughly 0.34% of Pennsylvania’s population.

I connected with some of our LGBTQ brothers, sisters, and allies to get a pulse on their sense of urgency to vote, to activate, and to activate others.

How do you get your friends to vote?

Kurt Pfeiffer, educator
“I have a dialogue with them on the issues. It’s especially important to do that with people that don’t think their vote counts. My oldest sister didn’t vote until she was 60. After talking about how voting affects policies that affected her, she began an in-depth review of both sides of the issues, and came to wonderful conclusions that make me (and would have made my deceased Navy father) incredibly proud. One person at a time.”

Joseph Boyle, artist
“I listen to their concerns about the state of our country to seek common ground on issues that concern me too. Then, I share whatever information I have. If someone is planning not to vote in ‘protest’ or vote third party because they aren’t getting the candidate they want, now is not the time to throw a tantrum. We need to look at the reality of what is before us, deciding if we want to participate with our voices or simply sit in silence. Keep your neck in the game.

Collins Elizabeth, content creator
“I’m trying to get more people to vote,” said content creator Collins Elizabeth.

We have to work with what we have in the moment, and in this moment, it’s too important, we have to deal with the reality of this situation.”

Collins Elizabeth, content creator
“When I’m trying to get more people to vote, I saturate all my social media profiles and engage in conversation. It’s the modern day voting pin or bumper sticker.”

Why are you voting?

Kurt Pfeiffer, educator
“I’m voting for my right, for my life. I’m voting for the future of the planet and the children I teach. Things in the world are changing for the better in some ways, and significantly worse in others, the environment, racial divides, national debt, cost of education, to name a few. Kids today are the first generation that may not have it as good financially or health-wise as their parents. How can we leave them a planet in worse shape, and with so many cards stacked against them to start life? What hopes can they have when the system works against them? I have to use my vote to make things better for them.”

Joseph Boyle, artist
“It’s my responsibility. I am deeply concerned with what will happen to us if we don’t rein in the instability that we have been exposed to for the last four years,” said artist Joseph Boyle.

Joseph Boyle, artist
“It’s my responsibility. I am deeply concerned with what will happen to us if we don’t rein in the instability that we have been exposed to for the last four years. People from different walks of life have been labeled as the ‘other‘ by our current president for years. This divides our country on a core level that will permanently damage us. My vote gives me a seat at the table, and even though it is one out of millions, my voice has to be included in our healing journey. Instead of moving forward with the hope of developing communal resonance, we’ve stumbled ahead, trying to keep things together. We desperately need a leader that is not catering to one side at the explicit detriment of the other.”

Adam Carter, educator
“I am voting because it hasn’t always been a privilege for all people. Exercising my right to vote is my ability to join, collectively with others, to select who we want to make the important decisions that affect us all. I want my voice to be heard.”

What makes this election so important to you?

Kurt Pfeiffer, educator
“We have seen the ugly side of America gain power and strength from the election of Donald Trump. He has simply brought out the worst in everyone, and relishes in the mayhem he’s created. I vote for the chance to heal this nation, and live up to our reputation in the world.”

Joseph Boyle, artist
“I am deeply afraid of the current persona of our country. We’ve fostered an identity of us vs. them. I recently got married, and though I am sure that my marriage won’t be wiped away, I am not sure my future with him will be protected in other civic arenas. Our president has exacerbated a notion that marginalized people are expendable. I don’t want my human rights dissected by the majority as if it had an inherent right to do so. If left unchecked, we will only see increased micro-harassment that should not exist in our country.”

Adam Carter, educator
“Now, more than ever, our country needs strong leadership,” said educator Adam Carter. “The president has the power to influence so many citizens for better or worse.”

Adam Carter, educator
“Now, more than ever, our country needs strong leadership. The president has the power to influence so many citizens for better or worse. They set the tone for how we move forward together or continue to become more divided and entrenched in polarized politics. We need unity.”

Collins Elizabeth, content creator
“As a queer identifying human, I am often filled with rage, especially when certain parties are actively trying to make life for me and people like me difficult. I cannot sit by and not be moved to vote. When I see the percentage of LGBTQ adults who aren’t moved to vote, it moves me more to be vocal about voting, especially in local elections. I love investigating candidates, seeing what they do under a ‘trial by fire’ situation. How can I be queer and not want to make life for myself & others better?”