img_9861Story by Justice Nawman and Trey Martin, photo by Trey Martin

With the arrival of November comes Thanksgiving, Veteran’s Day, and the long awaited general election. While the election process has come with many pros and cons, it is important for American citizens to cast their vote.

“[Election day is] what makes [America] a democracy, [and when] citizens vote, they’re exercising the best way they can that we live in a democracy and that’s their power. We govern with the consent of the governed and that means it’s us,” social studies teacher Kathy Wagner said.

This year especially, many people are eager for a chance to give their input on how this nation is run, which foreshadows a potentially higher voter turnout.

“I think that [voter turnout] is going to be high because it’s been such a heated clash between the two candidates, it doesn’t seem to be a clear winner right now and there are so many people involved in what they’re saying about their plans that I think it’s going to be pretty high,” Wagner said.

Grabbing the millennial vote was a focus of the two major party candidates. Questions have been raised as to whether the 26th amendment is suitable for our country.

“The legal voting age is good where it’s at because you’re an adult when you’re 18 so you should be allowed to make these choices but also there are many young teens that have no idea about anything with the legal or policy process and should not be allowed to vote just for fun, so there’s no way it should be lowered,” senior Jordan Beatson said.

With the legal voting age being eighteen, senior JP Crane is one of the many people having the opportunity to vote this year for the first time. He is excited about the chance to finally have a say in not only political affairs, but the future of America as a whole.

“It’s a great feeling because I can put my input into how our country is going to be run,” JP said.

While JP initially followed his parent’s political choices, he now sees the importance of making his own decisions and the significance behind choosing who is best for America based on what this country needs or wants.

“I originally always believed what my parents believed but now I see how things work and why things are the way they are, so I picked who I’m voting for based on what needs I think they will fill for the country,” JP said.

The responsibility and maturity that comes with voting in the general election is exciting for Dutch Fork students that are of-age.

“My favorite part about the election process is the feeling that I can be part of making a change on an important decision in this country,” Jordan said.

With the election coming to a close, many people are reflecting on their experiences and holding their breath on the decision that could change America forever. Senior Anna Lee said that her favorite part of the election process is the opinion of other citizens.

“I would have to say that my favorite part of the entire election process has probably been learning other citizen’s opinions regarding politics,” Anna said. “…which are not as out in the open in non-election years, and seeing how it brings some people together while tearing others apart.”