Pritzker Students Talk Election Day

Pritzker Students Talk Election Day

By Jazmin Bustamante ’21

Students at Pritzker speak on whether or not they would be taking advantage of voting on Election Day as there was no school.
Chicago Governor J.B. Pritzker announced Nov. 3, Election Day, as a governmental holiday which resulted in students not having school. Principal Carrie Spitz sent out an email for The Jaguar Journal on Oct. 29 which stated school being off as an opportunity “to encourage staff and eligible students to go out and vote.”
“I personally took advantage of this day off to vote as it was my first time to do so,” senior Stephanie Alvarado said. Alvarado continued, “Though electoral politics in general can be inaccessible, I’m glad to have had the chance to participate in doing my part to vote. If school hadn’t been cancelled on such an important day I think it isn’t unreasonable to say that would be unfair.”
For students newly introduced to the concept of voting, actually doing so in person was found to be complicated at face value according to senior Karen Fonseca.
“The overall experience took me roughly over an hour since I had to register to vote once I arrived at my voting location which was definitely somewhat confusing since certain documents, such as my Social Security and State I.D. were required,” Fonseca explained.
As senior Dashaun Singleton stated, “I’m not particularly fond of either candidates considering their policies so having to wait in line for a long time to vote did make me feel as though it was a rather fruitless way of spent time.”
Democratic Party nominee Joe Biden and Republican Party nominee Donald Trump were the two finalists for the 2020 Presidential Race, and they stirred discourse among youth across the United States.
“Considering the spike in conversations surrounding topics such as reimagining public safety largely due to the Black Lives Matter Movement, it’s safe to say criticisms around Biden exist because of the police affiliation of his running partner Kamala Harris,” Alvarado said.
Fonseca added how “voting in itself is largely inaccessible which is a major conversation that should be had since it means voter turnout and results can be biased.”
As Singleton contributed, “While voting is painted as the only viable solution towards progressive change, other important approaches such as community organizing should not be ignored- especially by the youth.”
“Working together in masses as a collective can bring about social and governmental change, so we should not restrict our framework within this very binary American voting system,” Dashaun finished.
In Biden’s presidential victory on Nov. 7, students now only look to the future in what is to be seen of both his and Harris’ administration.