Is it Still Worth It?

October 5th, 2012

I’ve had convos with young, eligible voters who dis voter registration and voting in general. From these conversations, I have brief moments where I doubt my personal foundation and life’s meaning, I’m not mad at them – I don’t like it, but I understand.


Got my voter registration card around August 19, 1983. True story though – I sat out a year and was well into year 19 before I thought I needed to be registered to vote. Registering to vote was too confusing and ridiculously inconvenient.  I always assumed that since it was my birthright I was good to go on my eighteenth. Hey, if the Feds could find me to make sure I paid my taxes and to prep me up to fight, then was it unusual to expect that I would just get my voter reg card in the mail

I did something unthinkable: ditched work to go register to vote. The impending election of the President in my life got me fired up. The trash talking candidates – and my nagging dad – made it plain that it was time for me to get into the game.  For me, a few of them were eloquently bold and politically cold. I saw a person or two who I felt would persistent on my behalf and challenge me and my generation to dream and to achieve something important for the country.  I was drawn to one candidate who laid it down – don’t just try to do what’s possible when the system is busted.

The issues the men who wanted to be President beefed over were issues that I owned, too: war; equality; joblessness; urban spots that did not empower young people; my safety; and, help for people in need. On the strength, I identified with a tone of defiance from a few of the candidates.  I thought I would be allowed to have a voice in the making of the country.  This was the first time politicians motivated me.

As that guy with roots in the country’s segregated past, I felt that my little vote would finally be effective. The Ancestors would be pleased.

Any progress on these issues? Should the motivation to participate always have to come from a politician? Are these still the issues that matter for the 16-24 year old set?

Peace (with a reprise of an existential Voter’s Playlist).

2 Comments on Is it Still Worth It?

  • Dear Dean Elmore
    I am writing to express an opinion and concern about the increase in robbery attacks against BU students by “Black” men.
    We condemn these robberies and call for continued thorough investigations. While I do not doubt the four or five attacks by perhaps the same individuals, is there a possibility that a deeper and neutral investigation could reveal other facts related to these alleged behaviors especially reported as perpetrated by a particular racial group?
    While crimes must be viewed with all honesty and punished, I guess the constant barrage of students with news that some black men are attacking BU students is also beginning to affect the moral, confidence and security of some black male students of Boston University. These things often enforce social and societal stereotypes and insecurity. They provides another justification for suspiciously viewing black males on BU campus as suspicious of criminal behaviors and their criminalization.
    We pray for a thorough investigation and the need for dialogue around the issue of racial stereotypes, criminalization and race relation on Boston University campus. I remember when there was an increase in the report of rape and sexual abuse of female students on BU campus by members of the BU Hockey team and other white male students, there were constant discussions around the issue on campus. Can this issue be a platform at Boston University to talk about race, stereotype and criminalization on Boston University campus?
    George Walters-Sleyon
    STH Student

  • I’d like to know when the George Sherman Union was first built. I was at BU from 1962 to 1964 (Class of ’66; ACS Deg.), and I don’t remember it being there when I first started as a student in 1962. Possibly it was built while I was there.

Post Your Comment