Throughout this election I have stayed extremely silent on my views. When professors and people on the street would ask if I'm registered to vote I would say no; but sometimes say so I didn't have to answer the question, "Why not?" I attend school in Ohio, but I am from New York, so I used this as my main excuse, "I didn't know I could vote in Ohio even though I'm not a resident." Honestly, for a long time I believed I couldn't vote in Ohio, but even when I found out I could, I didn't do anything about it. I am very upset I didn't come to the realization of how important it is for me to vote until after the election was over. I saw videos on social media about how important it is to vote on the day of the election, and I just wish I saw them sooner.
I wish I had friends or family members that would ask me if I'm voting and push me to be more involved in the election. I obviously cannot blame my absence in this election on other people; I just wish I had a stronger political voice that I knew more personally than professors and students in my class.
I wish I took this election more seriously, because with my vote I could have made some impact, even if it be small. This could have been my first time using my right to vote, and I just wasted it. I started learning about the main concerns of each candidate after the election, and realized that one candidate had ideas I believed in more than the other. I still stay extremely silent on my views because I didn't vote; I don't believe in expressing your views unless you have acted on them.
I wish that seeing pictures of peoples' reactions and protest didn't make me upset. They make me upset because I could have taken two hours out of my day to cast a single vote that could have helped America. I have family, friends and fellow students who feel extremely impacted by this election and I just feel useless between it all.
I wish all of the millennials who had chosen not to vote like me realize that we have made a mistake. We have made a mistake in believing our voice doesn't matter, whether you care about politics or not. I hope this election has opened the eyes of many young people who thought they could not care less about voting. I have seen more tears shed over the outcome of this election than joy, and that saddens me more than I ever imagined it would.
America, I am sorry I didn't utilize my right to vote the way I should have. I promise not to let you down next time. To all of the other non-voters, do not feel foolish because you didn't vote; this was not the election I was hoping to cast my first vote in either. We do need to realize voting is a privilege that people fight for us everyday; we cannot take it for granted anymore.