Hampton U. students vote, or not

By Kelli Esquilin

The Monday before Election Day should be normally buzzing with people wondering and asking, “Are you voting tomorrow?”

That was not the case with many Hampton students. When asked, “Are you voting tomorrow,” many students said “no.”

“Is that tomorrow?” asked George Johnson III, an Interdisciplinary Education major from Hampton. He said since he had not gone to any informational hearings about the candidates or sought out their platforms on his own, he would not be voting Tuesday.

“I don’t want to vote aimlessly,” said Johnson, “I am a Democrat, but I won’t vote for the candidate based on his political party alone.”

Another Virginia native, Eric Marshall II, a graduate physics major from Virginia Beach, said that he is voting Tuesday.

“As Americans we are given a right to vote from birth,” Marshall said. “If you are given the chance to vote on something where the outcome would directly affect you, you should be adamant about it.”

It seemed as if only the people who lived in the area cared about who was governing it and what the outcome of the vote might be. However, Hampton University has students from all over the United States, some of whom are registered to vote in the state of Virginia.

Robert Kearney IV, sociology major from Philadelphia, said that even though he is registered to vote in Virginia, he will not be voting Tuesday. “I only registered to vote in Virginia so that my presidential vote would count for this state,” Kearney explained.

“I’m not voting because I don’t live here, so I don’t want to vote to affect those who have to live with my choice.”

That’s the way many out-of-state Hampton students feel about voting in a state they don’t expect to be in for very long.

On the other hand, “if students don’t vote – in their home state or in Virginia – they should not have the right to complain,” said Marshall after being asked why he was voting.

The writer is a junior at Hampton University Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications.