Front Porch Blog

Cast your ballot for the environment

“Now more than ever the people are responsible for the character of their Congress. If that body be ignorant, reckless, and corrupt, it is because the people tolerate ignorance, recklessness, and corruption.” -James Garfield

What is the importance of voting? Voting is your constitutional right as an American. It is the shining platform of democracy. Elected officials make the decisions that affect how our country is run. By participating in the election process, we as citizens are indirectly making the decisions that affect … ourselves! That is what it means to live in a representative democracy.

We vote for democracy, the free world, as our duty to our country, because so many fought and died for it, because so much blood spilled so we wouldn’t be represented by a throne, and we vote because that is the example we want to set for our children.

Voting can be a vehicle to help citizens become more educated about their community and involved in its progress. According to PEW Research, however, less than 40% of the voting population casts a ballot during mid-term elections. The majority of nonvoters are younger, less educated and more financially stressed.

Midterm election participation is especially important because we have the chance to elect the officials who work directly in and with our community. They are the people who live close by and can better understand the community’s needs. These officials are often easier to contact and it is their duty to bring our issues to Washington D.C.

When you head to the polls tomorrow, consider who you are voting for with regards to environmental issues. Do your favored candidates support clean water? Land? Air? Where do they stand? Environmental laws are vital to protecting our local communities. Do the research. Make the decision to vote. Participate in voting and you participate in decision-making. The power is yours, go out and be a voice at the ballot box!

Go to: to find your polling station.

An avid reader, hiker and dog lover, Jillian served as Associate Editor of The Appalachian Voice and Americorps Communications Outreach member from 2010-11.


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