As we come to the end of another legislative session, it's important to reflect on all of the good that has happened but also the things that need work on. After entering college, my political voice and passion have only increased.
I definitely cared about politics in high school but after entering college and finding a group that helped me find a community gave me more courage to speak up about the things that I care about.
There is such power in a community. And that is something that I never realized that I was missing until I had it. I completely understand how daunting it can seem to start getting politically vocal.
Especially if you have unpopular or controversial opinions. As someone who grew up in an extremely conservative region, it took me a long time to feel comfortable and confident standing in my beliefs which largely align with the left. But the only thing that I can tell you is that your minor discomfort and fear is so worth it.
I remember being nervous to display that first planned parenthood pin, not to mention that first nerve-wracking call to a legislator. But I can tell you from first-hand experience that it is not nearly as scary as it appears. It is easy to see our legislators as people standing on pedestals that are so far detached from our reality.
But the reality is that our legislators are normal people. They are mothers, fathers, carpenters, activists, and from a million other walks of life. And it truly helps to change your perspective when you contact your representatives. It helps you to feel more comfortable around them and it helps to prove that our legislators are everyday people.
They are everyday people with power only granted to them by us. Our legislators work directly for their constituents. And so even if your legislators have polar opposite opinions to yours, it is still imperative that we voice our opinions.
How are our legislators supposed to know that their constituents care about reproductive healthcare, comprehensive sex education, LGBTQ+ protections, and so many other issues that directly affect our daily lives?
I cannot stress enough just how important these seemingly small steps of action are. Call your legislator. Email them about an issue you care about. If you have the chance, attend a lobby day about an issue that you feel passionately about.
In our society, it's easy to view people in power as distant and out of reach but we cannot forget that the United States was founded on the rule of the people by the people. So people, call your legislators.