Things That Matter

Don’t Vote, Everything is Fine

Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina, and Virginia are voting today for their primary election candidates. Governors, City Councilors, Members of Congress, and seats up and down the ballot are all up for grabs. Who will you vote for? Click here to find your voting location or voter registration information. 

Or will you be a part of the 50% of people age 18-29 who sat out the election in the 2016 November Presidential election? You could be telling yourself, “what does it matter, my vote doesn’t make a difference.” The usual response to this age old excuse is, “yes, your vote does make a difference,” but researchers decided to finally back that up with real data. According to CivicYouth.org,

“Parties and other political groups often overlook the votes and energy of young people even where youth can have a decisive influence on the outcome of the race. CIRCLE is providing data-driven insights about the states and congressional districts where youth are poised to have a disproportionately high electoral impact in 2018.”

They found that youth are poised to be the make it or break it factor for campaigns from states all over the country including Maine and North Dakota, who head to the voting booths today. But let’s take a look at past elections. Where did the youth vote actually matter?

In these states they estimated that the youth vote in 2012 were responsible for at least 80 electoral votes which handed the presidential election to Obama.

There are also races all over the country that always win or lose by just a handful of people. Currently in Orange County, California, two Democrats are battling it out for second place with only 129 votes separating them. In San Francisco, they still don’t know who won their Mayoral race.

But hey, at the end of the day, no one can make you care or get you motivated to vote other than yourself. The System would love to keep everything the same – OR – you can vote and show candidates from all parties that you mean business and if you don’t like the job they are doing, you WILL vote them out. Up to you.

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez Nailed A Vogue Feature And We’ve Been Waiting For This Kind Of Chingona Mood For Too Long

Things That Matter

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez Nailed A Vogue Feature And We’ve Been Waiting For This Kind Of Chingona Mood For Too Long

A lot has happened in the past year. The revolution against President Donald Trump began during the primary elections — when an overwhelmingly amount of minority women ran for office, many for the very first time. The change might not be drastically different (Trump is still in office), but a revolution never happens overnight, even though it sort of did with just one candidate.

Recently, the congresswoman was spotlighted in a piece by Vogue “36 Hours With Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez” wherein she was called “America’s freshman class president.” The piece took readers on a ride, detailing the politician’s daily schedule and what her life has been like in the year since her election.

One year ago, voters in the Bronx and Queens voted to elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as the youngest Latina to ever serve in Congress.

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez changed the game. She was able to oust a ten-term incumbent Congressman, Democratic Caucus Chair Joe Crowley. With that historic win, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, AOC as so many of her fans call her, became a household name.

In a year, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez has done more on Capitol Hill than many veterans in the House. Why is that you ask? She’s fearless, plain and simple.

Her very vocal nature has gotten Rep. Ocasio-Cortez a lot of flack from her Republican counterparts and also from some Dems, but that’s mainly because they’re not used to hearing a brown woman speak her mind and create change with a couple of tweets.

Here’s a quick list of things she’s taking on in the months since her election:

  1. Bring the Green New Deal to the forefront of our climate change concerns.
  2. Hasn’t backed down from her #AbolishIce stance
  3. Pays her staff equal pay and implemented paternity leave as well.
  4. Kicked out Amazon out of New York City because it would be devastating to the local community.
  5. Showed her millions of followers what being a congresswoman is all about thanks to her incredible Insta-stories.
  6. Continues to fight for the welfare of Puerto Ricans who still haven’t gotten their relief funds.
  7. Put the spotlight on another young Latina trying to make a difference in the community as the first Queer Latina to run for Queens District Attorney.
  8. Her presence alone has shown the rich white politicians that Latinx need to be recognized and that they’re capable of creating positive change.
  9. She doesn’t back down to those trying to intimidate her.
  10. She’s also fighting vigorously for the rights of minorities, women, and the LGTBQ community.

We can go on and on.

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez attributes her staying power to her bold demeanor.

I do think that when I first got here, almost everyone thought I was a lightweight,” she said in an interview with Vogue. “Republicans really tried to fuck with me, for lack of a better term.”

“I let them have it, then it probably happened three or four times before they stopped interrupting me ever again,” she added. “Polling shows that affluent women don’t like that. I need to be a gentlelady, and, I mean, I can if I want to be. But I don’t want to be.”

Guatemala’s Groundbreaking Decision To Allow U.S.- Based Citizens To Vote Could Change The Way We Cast Ballots In The Near Future

Things That Matter

Guatemala’s Groundbreaking Decision To Allow U.S.- Based Citizens To Vote Could Change The Way We Cast Ballots In The Near Future

lili_v_corona / Instagram

Voting in every single election is a crucial part of voicing your concerns about how your country is run. It’s also the perfect time to dictate change, especially with presidential elections.

There’s so much corruption in Latin American — and in the U.S. — that the only way we can make a difference is by voting corruption out. That’s exactly what is taking place in Central America.

Elections are taking place in Guatemala and for the first time ever, 60,000 Guatemalans living in the U.S. will be able to cast their vote.

Credit: @Forbes / Twitter

“At least 60,000 were eligible to vote in Los Angeles, New York, Maryland and Washington, D.C., all home to large numbers of Guatemalan emigres,” the Associated Press is reporting.

Aside from voting for a new president, Guatemalans will be able to vote for a new vice-president, 158 congress members, and 340 mayors. Guatemalans living in the U.S. will only be able to vote for the president and vice president.

These elections are extremely important as the three previous presidents have been charged with corruption.

Credit: @BoscoJI65 / Twitter

“There is a belief that instead of advancing in these four years of government, we’ve gone backward,” Marco René Cuellar, 39, told the New York Times. “We’ve lost our way as a country, but we should not lose faith in the democratic process we have.”

Furthermore, the next president can help bring peace to the country and end the mass exodus that is going on in Guatemala.

Credit: @WSJ / Twitter

Since 2016, more than 90,000 Guatemalans have been deported from the U.S, NPR reports, and thousands more make the trek back due to lack of work, violence, and poverty.

While voting is taking place now, the second round of voting will happen in August.

Out of 19 presidential candidates including a former First Lady and an indigenous woman, it looks like Guatemala will have a female leader.

Credit: @Reuters / Twitter

According to the Times, “Sandra Torres had captured more than 22 percent of the vote, followed by four-time presidential candidate Alejandro Giammattei with 16 percent.” They also report none of the candidates will secure 50 percent of the votes or more so that 22 percent is looking really good for Torres.  

READ: Here’s How These Huaraches Are Helping Guatemala’s Mayans Fight Pollution

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