Young People, Especially Those of Color: You Alone Can Fix This

Vote like your life depends on it. Because it does

Christian Wardlaw
4 min readJan 7, 2022


Four young men and women laughing and walking on grass in Palm Springs, California.
Happy, young, carefree people who need to get their asses to the polls. (Oveth Martinez via Unsplash)

Elections are coming up. From local school board runs to the national mid-terms, every single one of them matters. Young people, especially those of color, need to get educated, get involved, and get their asses to the polls.

Now that state legislatures in some states are making it harder to vote, and in one case making it illegal to give people who are waiting in line a fucking bottle of water or a yummy chimcken sammie (see: Georgia), you can’t prioritize anything else.

So young people, especially those of color, please register to vote now, not later. Vote early by mail if you can. If you must physically go to the polls, show up early with the paperwork you might need when voting in person. Wear comfortable clothes, especially shoes. Bring your own water, and maybe a beach chair. Put a hat on your head and sunscreen on your skin, and bring an umbrella if necessary.

Consider voting an investment not just in the future of America, but in your own future and that of your descendants. Make the United States a place where you and the people you love the most will want to live for decades to come. In case you’re not addicted to Zillow like I am, real estate prices in Canada are ridiculous. And that’s coming from a guy who lives in California. Where the hell else are we supposed to go when the American experiment comes to an end?

Why am I addressing young people, especially those of color? Historically, you’re the ones who don’t vote. If you consistently showed up to the polls, the current shitshow in D.C. wouldn’t smell nearly as bad. History demonstrates that when you show up, you make a difference.

Look, I get it. You’ve got other things going on. Other priorities in life. I remember those days. Aside from presidential elections, I didn’t vote when I was in my 20s and 30s, let alone pay much attention to the national or local news. That began to change after September 11, 2001, and its aftermath, and then revved up with Barack Obama’s election and the political and social response to the first Black president of the United States of America.



Christian Wardlaw

Father. Husband. Driver. Traveler. Writer. Editor. Photographer. Video Host. Survivor.