Can’t vote? Ways to influence election

Multiple options to make a difference on Nov 3

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Jackson Thompson

ackson Thompson, 11, uses his cookie business to urge people to vote.

Fall doesn’t just mean the return of pumpkin spice lattes and planning Halloween costumes, it’s also the return of another election season. Most Miramonte students are frustrated as they watch on the sidelines, unable to contribute by voting.. 

In November we will be electing a president.  Even though the 26th Amendment excludes voters under the age of 18, there are still many ways for underage voters to share their opinions and make small impacts on the election. 

Donating to specific candidates or political party campaigns is a great way to have an impact.. Another option is encouraging people to vote, regardless of who they’re voting for,  and helping them learn how to register.

Jackson Thomson, 11, a sixth grader at Orinda Intermediate School is an entrepreneur who uses his cookie business, Dip Chocolates, as a way to raise and donate money to campaigns. He created the limited edition Biden-Harris cookie, and a portion of his proceeds from selling it go to support the Biden-Harris campaign. He also created the limited edition Vote cookie, and a portion of his proceeds from it go to support campaigns that help increase voter participation in swing states. 

“I feel like my cookies are making an impact because if the word gets out, then that could inspire people to vote for Joe Biden. If they are not voting [at all], the same goes for the vote cookies I made,” Thomson said. 

Signing up through organizations to send texts or emails, make calls, or even write handwritten letters and postcards regarding the election is a way for anyone to make a small impact. Independently, you can reach out to your friends and family, reminding them to vote and giving them your input. 

Most teenagers use social media as a way to connect with friends and as a source of entertainment, but social media can also be used as a tool for voicing and amplifying your opinions. According to The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, “It will also increase young people’s political skills, knowledge, and motivation by providing opportunities for young people to learn that their voices and action are welcome and valued in our political system.”

Miramonte sophomore Jack Hughes uses his social media platforms as a way to share his views on politics and his research on candidates. 

“I only speak on topics that I feel as if I’m genuinely informed [about] and I think that other people would benefit from,” Hughes said. “It also teaches students at Miramonte to pay attention and be involved in news and politics, which I think everyone should be.”

Another great way to help with the election is to become a poll worker. You must be at least 16 years old to apply,  and you must meet a few requirements. Not only do you get to play an important role in the election process, you will also get paid. 

“It’s a great way for underage voters to make a difference in the election without directly voting,” sophomore Stella Symonds said. 

So when you turn on your television on November 3 to watch the election while munching on the last pieces of your Halloween candy, you can be proud that even though your vote won’t be on the screen, your voice and opinions made a difference.