The local mayoral and city council elections take place one month from now on Nov. 5. Historically, the turnout for local elections has been dismally low, despite the fact these elections affect the local residents far more directly and immediately than any presidential election does. As students, involvement in our local community is paramount to our college experience. Students live in this city for at least 10 months out of the year, for four years. We are as much a part of Moscow as any permanent resident –perhaps even more so.
The streets we drive on, the sidewalks we walk on, the farmers market we visit every weekend and the laws and regulations that govern them all — they affect every single one of us. We would be incredibly remiss if we gave up the opportunity for our voices to be heard in local elections.
Educate yourselves, learn about the candidates and get out to vote. There are people in our city who prefer students don’t vote in local elections. But without students, Moscow would be just another small town in rural Idaho. It is up to us to have an influence on who dictates the policies in the city we live in for the majority of the year.
Getting involved in local politics may sound droll. But it doesn’t take more than a few hours over the course of the next month to get acquainted about the candidates, make an informed decision and take a few minutes to cast a ballot.
We are members of this community — just as much as those who live in Moscow permanently. It’s time we started acting like it.