Show Me What Democracy Looks Like!

Jul 8, 2016 | Zachary Bynum

This summer has been a whirlwind of civic engagement, community outreach, and fighting for DEMOCRACY. Ahh, yes! No small initiative but one that must be taken if we ever want to see change here in North Carolina. This summer I have been interning with Democracy North Carolina as a community organizer. This nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that works to resolve voting issues here in the state of North Carolina has provided me an experience of a lifetime. I have been doing voter registration drives at concerts, festivals, and all throughout the Forsyth county. I have been meeting with elected officials to discuss voting rights and political engagement. Best of all, I have been gaining so many skills, not just as an organizer, but as a citizen as well, and all with my one of my best friends. I think I speak for us both when I say that there is no greater feeling than the one you get when you are contributing to something much bigger than yourself with people who care about the things you do.

News Flash: Your Vote Matters.

Feb 10, 2016 | Katherine Cassidy

The results of the New Hampshire Primary – along with the Iowa caucus – impact which campaigns keep their skin in the game, and which campaigns pack up and go home. Since the New Hampshirites know that their vote is important, they make the candidates work for it. Unlike in Iowa, where there were endless large rallies in venues to hold hundreds – and even thousands – of people, New Hampshire takes a different approach: small, intimate town halls throughout the state.

Inquiring Minds Want to Know

Jul 27, 2016 | Ciara Ciez

Welcome to my coverage of the RNC!

I’m finally back after a long blogging hiatus, ready to talk to you about the upcoming RNC. A lot has happened since I last addressed you. Donald Trump has emerged as the Republican nominee beating out many established members of the Republican Party and attracting voters en masse. I’m pretty excited to be attending the RNC because I think it’ll be one of the most interesting conventions we’ll see in a while- we have a really divisive, dynamic character at the epicenter of this convention. The jury is still out on Trump with many large Republican players refusing to comment on their opinion of him. Also, there are lots of rumors swirling regarding the possibility of protests and violence in the arena and surrounding areas.

Presidential Elections Break Up Friendships

Aug 30, 2016 | Hannah Dobie

Picture this: three seniors who have been best friends since freshman year, sitting in the TV room, drinking wine. We start talking about the 49ers quarter back, Colin Kaepernick, who did not stand up during the national anthem in order to bring attention to oppression of black lives in this country. This leads to other discussions and topics that surround gender, race, ethnicity, and then we start talking about…. Trump V. Clinton.

Is it all just a publicity stunt?

By Thornton Blount 8/30/16

For the past several months, multiple journalists have been theorizing that Trump may actually drop out before/after Election Day, claiming that he doesn’t actually want to be President. There have been articles in the New York Times, CNBC, and CNN, all talking about the same possibility. PredictIt, a political betting site, even runs odds on Trump dropping out before August 31st (tomorrow!). The CNN article cites several moments in interviews when Trump joked(?) about dropping out.

Trump’s Oversights

Jul 22, 2016 | Kelci Hobson

After three days of Trump slyly hanging in the crowd of the Republican National Convention, and making dramatic entrances, we finally were able to hear from the Donald himself. Seventy-four  minutes later the Donald did not live up to the hype, as many people expected to finally hear a laid out plan of what he would do if he did in fact become president. Unfortunately, all we heard was the same rambling we have heard for months now.

More than just “Civic Engagement”

Feb 2, 2016 | Eugenia Huang

Working for the Cruz campaign was both surprisingly inspiring and nerve wrenchingly bewildering. As a person who spends most of her time on the complete other side of the political spectrum, walking into a room full of strong-willed, courageous conservatives had me on edge and completely out of my comfort zone. But inside the volunteer headquarters the atmosphere was mostly inviting, lively, and warm.

Sexism in the Age of the (potential) First Woman President

Oct 20, 2016 | Erica Jordan

He moved from normalizing sexual assault to ISIS so quickly my head spun. It was then both a triumphant moment and agonizingly painful to watch Hillary give a measured and reasonable response. Hillary attacking this one man does nothing to erode a system that protects men for having to take responsibility for these sexually predatory thoughts and actions. It does nothing to stop women for being criminalized and mocked for coming forward with their stories of surviving sexual assault. It does not change the fact that Donald Trump paraded women at the debate who have accused Bill Clinton of sexual assault as political prawns, not individual human beings who have a right to have their stories be heard.

The DNC’s Triumph

Aug 30, 2016 | Cam Migdol

The DNC, on the other hand, was perhaps a completely opposite event. Whatever the RNC had emphasized, the DNC highlighted the opposite. While the RNC claimed Hillary was a crook, DNC speakers such as Bill and Chelsea Clinton emphasized the humanness of Hillary as a loving wife and mother. While the RNC highlighted Trump’s outsider status, DNC speakers, like President Obama, descried Hillary as an experienced leader in politics and a valuable cabinet member in the White House. Mr. Obama even noted that Hillary is the most qualified nominee for president in our nation’s history. Finally, Michelle went on to illustrate the beauty and success of the United States.  Where Trump had preached fear and hatred, the DNC boasted their values of love and acceptance. Where Trump had alienated countless Americans of countless identities and ideologies, Hillary and the Democrats celebrated them.

Anything is Possible

Feb 29, 2016 | Sebastian Ivory

My favorite part of the day had to have been our trip to Capitol Hill. First we had a meeting with Representative Alma Adams (NC-12) in the Cannon Office Building. While I have met with Representative Adams before, she has been one of my political inspirations. Representative Adams sent her career as an academic, before going running for Congress, and has spent her time in Washington fighting for all North Carolinians. Unfortunately after the North Carolina congressional maps were ruled unconstitutional, the North Carolina general assembly drew Representative Adams out of her district. While she has maintained her desire to serve the newly drawn district, multiple Charlotte Democrats have begun to explore a primary run for the new district, and if any of those challenges precipitate, it is sure to be a difficult challenge for Representative Adams. While I support Senator Sanders, I asked Representative Adams about how she thought racial politics affected the hyperpolarization in Washington, and how she thought sexism would impact hyperpolarization if Secretary Clinton was elected president. She gave an eloquent answer, which reassured me about the possibility of a [second] President Clinton. #BlueNoMatterWho

Bibles and Guns: A Night at the Ted Cruz Rally

Feb 28, 2016 | Carl McPhail

When Ted Cruz finally came out, he made a big point to talk about the passing of Justice Scalia and the implications his death would have on the election. Senator Cruz went on to point out cases that were favored by conservatives with 5-4 outcomes. He stressed that with a new liberal justice on the Supreme Court, there would be decades of liberal rulings to come. Cruz cited his experience as Solicitor General of Texas as a reason why his was ready to take on Washington. He really like to push that he was an an “Outlaw, blacklisted from the Republican establishment.”

Stronger Together

Oct 23, 2016 | Sophia Rossell Romo

I am so angry. I have been for months. When I hear how Mr. Trump speaks about women or Mexicans or black people and realize that he is saying what so many people have in their hearts. When I hear or experience everyday racism or sexism. When I imagine a world like the one Mr. Trump say he will create. I am angry, sad and disappointed. I know that Mr. Trump’s wild dreams will never come to pass. 11 million people cannot just be deported from our nation. A wall symbolizing xenophobia and ignorance is not going to be funded by the country he has spent the better part of a year insulting. Mr. Trump will never be our president. Still, I am furious.

Clinton or Trump- Who is More Qualified to be the President of the United States?

Oct 20, 2016 | Jackson Blodgett

What does it take to be the President of the United States of America?  According to the Constitution, all you need is to be a natural born citizen, at least thirty-five years old, and a resident within the United States for 14 years.  This of course isn’t taking into account the economic burden that it takes to run for president. Regardless, there aren’t many explicit qualifications necessary to be the President.  It was important for the founding fathers to make this list short so we, as citizens, can define what qualifications are necessary to be President... So now I ask; Who is more qualified to be the President of the United States? Trump? Or Clinton?

Election Eve Predictions

Nov 8, 2016 | Bruce Haywood

There are two things that I know for sure will happen on election day. First there is a 99.9% chance that I am on the edge of my seat all day checking the polls every 5 minutes. Second I will be feeling a constant nervous anticipation throughout the entire day. To ease some of my wonderment about who will win this election, I have tinkered nonstop the past couple weeks with CNN’s interactive election map, which can be found at http://www.cnn.com/election/interactive-electoral-college-map/ . The website provides a map of how each state has voted in the past two presidential elections as well as a map where one can predict how each state will vote. Based on current polls, the map shows that Trump must win every single battle ground state to win the election, otherwise Clinton will win.

Sincerely, a concerned, young voter

Sincerely, a concerned, young voter

Oct 23, 2016 | Cydney Meadows

I love Wake the Vote and in my short time with this organization, it has already proven to be the greatest opportunity I could have as an undergraduate student. Melissa Harris-Perry is a godsend and who I want to be when I grow up, that’s for sure. But let’s discuss Donald J. Trump. Trump called Hillary a “nasty woman.” I’m sure you’ve heard this already through the media, and I certainly hope you’re not surprised. As someone who was thoroughly disgusted to have this obscenity of an election as her first opportunity to vote, I can’t say I cared for Clinton or Trump from the get go. It became the decision of a lesser of two evils. As a young, biracial, educated woman, Hillary was obviously the best choice. But I don’t want to discuss Hillary. Often I am targeted for my disliking of Mr. Trump. My views are often said to be formed without basis and coming from an ungrateful “child.” But here is why I legitimately cannot stand Donald J. Trump.

Clinton’s Birtherism

Oct 23, 2016 | Rance Orrell

That’s right, an American presidential candidate called for the jailing of his political opponent on a national debate stage, but this isn’t as unprecedented as the pundits are claiming. Sure, no major party candidate has ever specifically called for the candidate of the opposite party to be jailed, but that’s not what the “lock her up” chants are about. They’re about delegitimizing Clinton’s presidency before it even begins, just as some have attempted to undermine President Obama’s legitimacy through the racist lens of birtherism.

North Carolina – The Most Important Swing State?

Oct 23, 2016 | Jay Sherrill

The implications of North Carolina’s importance are numerous. North Carolina, as already seen in this year’s election, will receive more and more attention from Presidential candidates. North Carolina’s status as a “toss-up” will encourage an increase in political spending in the state, from running television ads to funding large political rallies. North Carolina’s close demographics match to the rest of the United States indicates that the state’s winner in national elections will be more representative of the United States as a whole. Increased importance will result in more presidential and vice-presidential candidates coming from North Carolina, as both Democrats and Republicans seek nationally-appealing candidates that provide an advantage in the battleground state. North Carolina could also make an arguable case for becoming one of the early primary states, claiming to more accurately represent the will of the American people as a country than Iowa, New Hampshire or South Carolina. North Carolina is the most important swing state in this election, and will continue to be an important swing state in future elections as it continues to model national demographic trends.

As a North Carolinian, I can’t wait to see what the future holds.