What I Wish I Knew Before Voting

As the Elections are breathing on our necks today, there are some tips that you should know before you celebrate your right!

This year I voted for the first time and -oh boy- I wish I went there better prepared. I went last Thursday to vote with my beautiful chocolate skin friend, Ross, to do our early voting; he picked me up and we naturally started a conversation about what we were about to do, see, select, whatever you want to phrase it. He mentioned something about amendments, my whole world stopped at that moment and the only thing that came out of my mouth was, what amendments? I remember studying my Voting Cheat Sheet from one of Ilana Glazer’s post, but I was so lost when it comes to what amendments I agree with and which ones should be voted out. As I was voting I googled everything that I was not sure what my selection would be; selecting anything on the ballot is mighty confusing! I read everything multiple times, in both Spanish and English, to be candid, the wording used in the ballots it is so confusing that you will walk out with at least -3 neurons. Long dreadful minutes later, I walked out to meet with my friend -who finished before me- and interrogated him as we were coming out of some finals from University. I could not believe voting was going to be that stressful. I felt embarrassment, a walk of shame, how could I missed researching before voting in one of history crucial election?!

Research your State Ballot

If you a first-timer just like me, you can -literally- Google what your State Ballot looks like. I only knew the president and vice-president candidate I was going to elect, but nothing about who’s the major of the city where I used to live; I registered before moving to another city so that was confusing. You can browse on the internet what each person on your ballot stands for -just in case you have no idea who they are- and can analyse with a fair amount of time who represents you best. It is very important to not only think about what is best for you but the future generations to come to enjoy what you have enjoyed already.

When I selected and researched the candidates -on the spot- I made sure to select those who have a plan to help better climate change, strengthen education, believe in a reasonable health care system, equality, and would fight racial injustice. Not all of them would check my ideal box, but at least they were close to what problems I hoped they tackled once elected. It’s a gamble which I was willing to take to enjoy a future with my younger sister.

There is Still Time to Register to Vote In Some States

There are some states in which -unfortunately- you are unable to register to vote. However, there is still time to do so in certain States! So make sure you review which State you live in and take this chance to register. Appointing all candidates it’s so significant right now; it’s the chance you have to take control and give the power to the candidate that represents your ideals best. Ask yourself what problems should be resolved, what happened during the pandemic and how did the current people in power react to it. There is so much to think and analyse, but your vote can always make a massive difference. I know this might not be the presidential or representatives you wanted to vote for, but the choice is yours to make; you can still make the difference just by voting!

Do Not Let Them Turn You Away

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If you are registered to vote and for whatever reason, they deny this right to you, know that you can ask for a provisional ballot with a receipt, as is required by law! No one is allowed to deny a provisional ballot, and if they do, make sure you know your rights because they can not turn you away. It is expected for this to happen as it has happened in previous elections. There is going to be people who will try to take this away from you for the sole purpose of taking advantage and taking your vote away. That being said, you should stay woke, and stay informed!

The Cheat Sheets Were The Easiest Way for Me to Navigate

Ilana Glazer took upon her shoulders the mission of making Cheat Sheets that are easy to understand, extremely fun and V informative. Even though the cheat sheet was not made for all 50 States, it includes the states that have the biggest decision making for this elections. Go to her Instagram and see if your State is included, and if is you will have a gag with all the invites she brought to make this Cheat Sheets. I was surprised when she invited Erick André to discuss the candidates for Florida! It was great to hear both comedians talking about politics in a humorous yet informative tone.

Already Voted? Stay Calm and Find a Distraction

There is so much negativity in the air and the best you can do is to disconnect for the time being. We already have an idea of what could happen when either or candidate wins. The stress of riots being born because the results are waiting around the corner. It is really up to you and me to keep calm until THE OFFICIAL RESULTS -see what I did there? The official results- comes out and not what a candidate says about the results. Certainly, the results will not come out today, so relax my friend before we turn depressive and our anxiety betrays us.

I want to give so much thank you’s to my friend Ross for taking me out to vote for the first time!