The Right To Vote Means The Right Not To

There has been a lot of buzz recently about the need to vote with elections coming soon. We even had Pantherbook’s own Leah Canonico write an article about the importance of teenage voters. But isn’t the definition of democracy letting American citizens choose? Shouldn’t they be given the right to not only vote if they feel like it but also the right not to vote?

Recently Mr. Leighton’s students, who were assigned to get students turning 18 in the recent months to register as a voter, swarmed me during my lunch. While at first I declined they informed me that I had to because they were getting graded on the amount of people they could get to register and seeing as how I was on the list, they were determined.

Not only that but when I refused a second time I was called “un-American”. While I think it is a good idea to give students the opportunity to register if they do not have the time or the resources, it is disappointing that they would have to go to such lengths as to taunt the students who refuse.

It is my vote and if I don’t feel like giving it, it is my American right to do so. There is that old scenario where a man is complaining about the government and his friend replies, “Well did you vote?” and the man says no and the friend replies, “Well then you can’t complain.” This makes a good point but what about those that aren’t complaining? Are they “un-American” for not getting heated every time someone brings up an issue? Isn’t it more “un-American” to pressure kids into registering if they do not want to?