In 2011, I was an eighth-grade student in the West Ada School District (formerly Meridian School District). That year, the $18.5 million dollar levy failed and I experienced the consequences firsthand in the form of less school days, less attention from teachers, more stringent deadlines, and an overall environment of tension and frustration throughout the school. Today, I voted for the West Ada School District’s supplemental levy to ensure that future students don’t have such a negative experience. My government teacher offered his eligible students assignment credit if we turned out to vote (regardless of the way we voted), and provided us with a link to Idaho Statesman’s “November 2015 Treasure Valley Voters Guide.” This encouragement and resource provision allowed me to approach the ballot box feeling confident in my decision. Many Americans today view Election Day with cynicism, thinking “How could my vote matter?” This attitude is especially pervasive among younger voters. I’d like to encourage young adults to reconsider their perspective; the ability to vote unencumbered is a privilege not guaranteed to all people. The best way to appreciate this privilege — and direct the future of our communities — is to put it in to practice.
Aurora Cossairt, Boise