The following is a guest post written by former LWVNJ intern, Jasmine Teague.
It was 2008 and I was so excited about the opportunity to vote for the first time in a presidential election. I was a little unsure about the procedures and what the experience would be like, as I walked onto the line to cast my vote. I knew for sure that this was an important part of history that I was partaking in and that I was proud to be a part of it. As I walked up to the line, I reflected on the fact that I am an African America female, both characteristics making it impossible to vote in previous years. I felt a sense of pride representing those who came before me to cast my ballot.
On this hot day, the line was very long and people were sweating but still determined to vote, anyway. As people stood waiting, they eventually began to talk casually. I made small talk with man standing next to me, who had American buttons and pins all over his shirt. He was so excited to tell me that he was a new citizen of the U.S.A. and this will be his first time voting. It was so nice to see such a melting pot of people. Suddenly in the back of me I heard an argument break out, discussing civil unions. The arguing eventually died down, but it added an element of excitement to the experience.
After walking out of the polls, I realized how strongly those people felt about their issue. More people should have a passionate stance on an issue. If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything. I was proud to be among the many voting and taking a stand for what I believe in.
Voting for me is something that should be a top priority. Visit the League of Women Voters of New Jersey’s website for more information on voting and how you can register to vote.