Midd-blog readers, lost prospective students looking for information about Quidditch and individuals who regularly google my name, welcome to my new advice column/series “Dear Cody.” Every week (or whenever I’m bored slash don’t want to do my reading for intro to contemporary lit. theory) I’ll be taking posts from Midd Confessional and imposing my advice on the anonymous OP (confesh slang for original poster).
Let’s start this blog post off by saying that when I say “OP,” I’m really talking to every member of this college community. So, hello everyone. I apologize to the masses for my long mono-induced absence. That being said, I am coming back this week in a big way to address a problem that I find particularly troubling and something that we should all be talking about—political apathy, especially in regards to the local SGA elections that will be going on this Thursday at noon until noon on Friday.
If one were to peruse Midd Confessional in order to gauge student interest about the upcoming elections, one would find comments and opinions that are either completely rooted in indifference or focused on superficial descriptions of candidates as “mean” or “good-natured” or “pompous.” Rarely do we find discussions about the candidates’ platforms (found at go/charlie and go/ryankim for Charlie Arnowitz ’13 and Ryan Kim ’14, respectfully) or anything that would suggest that we as a student body are truly engaged by the political process.
Traditionally, the percentage of students who go to the polls come Election Day is less than 30%. I think it’s baffling that a student body full of passionate, bright and vibrant young adults who, presumably, elect to come to a school like Middlebury in order to learn the kinds of things that will lead to inciting positive change in the world, don’t choose to engage in a system that could help improve life on campus.
This is not a blog post written with the intention of endorsing either Charlie or Ryan but rather a blog post written with the intention of endorsing the vote and the process itself. By not voting, we forfeit our voice and our agency in transforming this school into a place that serves its students. We have the power to make a difference even through a medium that, to some, seems small and insignificant. We have to mobilize and become active participants in the electoral process here at Midd—if we choose apathy over passion, silence over raised voices we let ourselves down.
At the end of the day, if you can facebook and do your homework, you can go/vote and do your homework. It’s a process that takes, quite literally, 2 minutes and could make a big difference at this school.
With love and admiration,