The 2020 election year is not only historic because it is the year of the presidential election. It is also the 100 year anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. This guarantees and protects a woman’s constitutional right to vote.
This centennial celebrates not only a women’s right to vote, it gives young adults the opportunity to create real change in their world.
Dr. Carolyn Kitch, a Journalism, Media & Communications Professor at Temple, says voting helps young adults to become more politically active:
“If we think of social change, as millions of ordinary people engaging at least this much, they’re engaging, fulfilling their responsibility and accepting their privilege, then that enormous change can happen.”
Voting is a constitutional right, but not everyone has taken advantage of it. A study conducted by The Center for American Women and Politics found that only 46% of eligible female voters participated in the 2016 presidential election. This was a 1.5% increase from the previous presidential election in 2012. Then only 44.5% of eligible female voters participated. In total 63% of eligible women voters of all ages reported voting in the 2016 election.
The League of Women’s Voters of Philadelphia says it works to motivate and empower young voters. Board member and secretary Samantha Apgar talked about the importance of young women’s participation in politics:
“You should vote because by not voting essentially what you’re doing is letting another generation pick things that will impact your life really deeply.”
The Liacouras Center is one of the several satellite election offices located in Philadelphia. Voters can register, and even request and return their mail-in ballots. Eager voters shared their thoughts on why it’s important for women to participate in the upcoming election.
“It truly is a privilege and it’s finally time for me to make a difference,” says Cat Smith.
Amanda Angel says “I’m excited to vote for the first time because I’m happy to finally make an impact.”
Voting is important for women now than ever before. The deadline to register in Pennsylvania is October 19.