If you have noticed a sharp increase in texts and social media posts reminding you to vote this past week, you are not alone. Now, with only six days before the November 3rd election, students here at Washburn are being bombarded with messages from all sides encouraging them to cast a ballot.
If you are a registered voter confused by the ceaseless noise, but still looking to make your voice heard, a few student organizations are looking to help you do just that.
On Thursday, October 29, 2020, from 4:00-4:45, the Washburn University College Democrats and Washburn University College Republicans are teaming up to cosponsor a Voter Information Panel with civic nonpartisan nonprofit Loud Light.
Loud Light is a Topeka based organization focused on building community power through voter registration and youth civic engagement campaigns. Each year they take on a number of Campus Fellows at colleges and universities all across the state to organize this get out the vote movement from the ground up.
Freshman Philosophy major Jerry Nieves is one such intern this fall.
“[At this panel] we are going to talk about early voting, provisional ballots, and talk more about the importance of voting as we really strive to get more of the youth in Kansas to vote. Topeka does a great job with the youth, but we can always do better,” says Nieves.
Loud Light prides themselves on their inclusivity and chooses not to tell young people who to vote for, opting instead to simply encourage reluctant students to vote in the first place.
On the subject of voter confusion, Program Director Anita Austin laughed, “Advanced ballots aren’t fraud. Just quote me as saying advanced ballots are not fraud.”
“Even early in-person voting is at a high because of covid because people are trying to avoid long lines. People are trying to find the right way to do this. But change casts doubt. It gives us a reason to worry as we hope it all just works out. And there are political parties trying to take advantage of that insecurity, to play off of it and make it seem like something it is not so if I could discount any misinformation it would be that your vote is safe and counted,” Austin continued.
Ichabods who would still like to learn more and participate in the post-presentation Q&A may safely attend this event virtually. The Zoom Meeting ID is 980 2097 3651 and the password is Washburn. The organizers appreciate but do not require, an RSVP on Bods Connect.
Chloe Chaffin is a Loud Light College Campus Fellow Intern this semester.
Edited by: Matthew L. Self,