Every year, people stress the importance of heading to the polls and voting — but as we all know, this year, it’s more imperative than ever to cast your vote.
Grant it, some states make it extremely difficult to do something as simple as vote, which discourages many people from even thinking about hitting the polls. NPR reports that in 2013, the Supreme Court struck down the requirement in Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act that some southern states and other jurisdictions around the country with a history of racial discrimination seek federal approval before implementing changes to their election rules and procedures.
Hence the reason why some of the wackiest and most controversial stories about voting come from Southern states, like Georgia and Florida. For example, Georgia had a law that rejected voter registration forms if certain information on the form, such as the hyphen in a person’s last name, didn’t precisely match the spelling in other state databases.
It’s clear that the powers that be try their hardest to discourage folks from voting. In 2011, Republican state senator Mike Bennett, allegedly told his colleagues during a debate on an elections bill that voting shouldn’t be easy: “The (African) people in the desert, who literally walk two and three hundred miles so they can have the opportunity to do what we do, and we want to make it more convenient?”
With disturbing statements like Bennett’s and a President who doesn’t care about anyone that doesn’t look like him, it’s important to hit the polls this November to cast your vote — especially millennials.
Statistics show that Millennials make up half the voting population: “As the boomer electorate decreases in size, experts suggest it is merely a matter of time before millennials become the largest and most powerful group driving future elections in the U.S. Unfortunately, not all who can vote will, meaning that fewer young people get to directly influence issues that might affect their lives for years to come, including college tuition reform and federal job programs.”
So before you hit the polls next month, keep your eyes peeled for these five simple ways some states make it harder to voter.