Last night I attended an event at my local Patagonia store called Vote Our Planet.
“We need to elect leaders at the local, state and national levels who will defend the well-being of our families and communities—leaders who support clean water, clean air, strong climate action and a courageous shift to renewable energy.
If we don’t act, then someone else will—someone who doesn’t care about a future for our children and other wild things.
The point was to get people to vote locally and nationally for our natural resources, because if we don’t, no one will. Additionally, Chicago Votes was there to register any new voters. Since I am already registered and I have been since I turned 18, I was asked to film a quick segment on why I am registered and how it makes me feel. Basically, I said that while being able to vote in presidential elections is an honor, it is also extremely important that young people vote in local elections as well.
Afterward, there was a panel discussion that included people from Illinois Environmental Council, Sierra Club Illinois Chapter, and the Environmental Law and Policy Center. The audience asked questions ranging from how college students could get more involved in local politics, to what are the most challenging parts of their job.
Overall, the night was very informative and made me really think about how I have been lacking in participating in local and state elections. While the presidential election is the one making the news right now, the smaller elections are ones that can also help defend our air, water, and soil.