We Decide (The Latino Vote in 2012)

Recently, I was interviewed by Lindsay Ferrier from The Stir. The segment is titled Florida's Unpredictable Latina Vote. One of the things that impacted me the most was to hear someone in that interview state that they might not vote at all.  It reminded me of some of the points I made in my previous post about voting.

So imagine how excited I was to learn that nuvoTV is having the first ever Latino town hall special called We Decide: Speak up & Make a Difference.  I think that everyone needs to watch this, not just Latinos.

I recently heard that a great number of people (not just Latinos) don't know who our government representatives are. Yet, we are expecting these same people to turn out and vote come November! It looks like we are going to have to do some cramming.  We can't complain about the state of the union if we don't know who is involved in making decisions and we certainly can't make educated voting decisions if we don't even know who is in the race.  It's so much more than just the presidential election.  If you are unsure as to who represents you, go to Who Is My Representative and find out! Then get to know them and what they stand for.

It is shocking to me to see these numbers:

  • Eligible Whites who votes – 66%
  • Eligible African Americans who voted – 65%
  • Eligible Latinos who voted – 50%

With so many people in the world still fighting (and dying) to be able to speak freely and vote, it is difficult to swallow these numbers. Granted, a lot of people say that it is also their right not to vote. I don't necessarily agree. This is a democracy and we each have a responsibility to contribute to the running of our government. How else are we going to do it if we don't take part in the vote? I guess not voting is a way to do it but, is that really doing any good?

The important topics for me are those that a lot in the community are discussing: education, jobs and healthcare.  With 4.4 million African American and 6.1 million Latino children living in poverty, I can't think of a more important subject. Except maybe education (which for me, directly impacts the poverty level).  Forty one percent of Latinos and 23% of African Americans over 20 have no high school diploma.  These issues need to be addressed.

I can write about them day in and day out but if we don't ensure that we are voting in November then it's not going to change. Like I said, this isn't just about the presidential election. Be mindful about the local races as well. School districts, state senate, etc.  These are all important roles and we need to have a voice in who is in office.

I will be tuning in to this premier tomorrow. I'm at a point where I want to know what I can do to mobilize more of you out there who either are undecided or have perhaps decided not to vote in this election.  It is so important. It's not just about you or I.

My little girl will be affected by this vote and when I think about it from that perspective, it ignites me into wanting to spread the word or do anything that is within my grasp to ensure that voter turn out is its highest this coming November.

Tell me, are you voting? What topics are important to you and what can you do to ensure others around you vote as well?

A little about We Decide: Premiering on nuvoTV on Aug. 19 at 8PM, the We Decide Latino town hall special will be moderated by award-winning journalist Natalie Morales and will feature a panel of high-profile experts who will engage with a live audience and other virtual participants connecting through social media platforms. The hour-long program will explore how the presidential candidates are addressing issues specific to America's Latinos, including unemployment, healthcare and education.

Disclosure: Disclose that your post is compensated and in collaboration with Latina Bloggers Connect and nuvoTV. All thoughts and opinions are my own.