On the Importance of Voting
A message from Dr. Dwight A. McBride, President and University Professor
With election day less than two weeks away, I want to take this opportunity to urge everyone in The New School community who is eligible to vote to exercise that right and responsibility.
This historic election is an opportunity not only to cast a vote for particular candidates or parties, but also to take a stand on important issues including public health, jobs and the economy, racial justice, immigration, climate change, rule of law, the character of our nation, and democracy itself. The right to vote is one of our powers to influence the choice between vastly different visions for what this country stands for and the values that will define its future. Let’s also remember that there are many community members at The New School who are not U.S. citizens or who may be ineligible to vote for a variety of reasons, yet the outcomes of this election will impact their lives through policies in areas such as immigration, criminal justice, and education.
This year there may be long lines or other impediments to voting. Take the time now to make your plan: know the location and hours of your polling place, any identification requirements, your transportation plan if necessary, and what health and safety measures to expect. Understand what your options are for absentee voting, early voting, or voting by mail. Here is information for New York voters; information for other states is available at the U.S. Vote Foundation.
I want to assure you that every member of The New School community who plans to vote on November 3rd will be given the time and flexibility they need to do so. Given what we stand for as a university, we encourage and support all of our community members who can vote to do so.
In the words of the late Congressman John Lewis, “…The vote is precious. It’s almost sacred. It is the most powerful nonviolent tool or instrument that we have in a democratic society. And we must use it.”
Many of us have already been engaged in volunteering and making our voices heard on issues. Whatever the outcome of the November 3rd election, this work will certainly continue. We remain strong in the power of our educational mission rooted in critical understanding, civil discourse and debate, creative expression, collaborative problem solving, and the drive to create a better world.