Fueled with optimism, two student’s long trip home to vote

By Erica Blackburn

New York City has become a home for Vashti Little, a senior at St. John’s University in Queens, N.Y.

New York City has everything that she needs that she rarely, if ever, goes home to Washington D.C. But on Tuesday, Nov. 6, she will make an exception.

As well all know, the polling places across the country will be filled with eager, excited citizens waiting to let their words and opinions be heard on Nov. 6. Vashti Little will be one of them. But her trek from New York to Washington D.C. won’t be an easy task. “If I drive, it takes about $40 alone for tolls,” said Little. “If I take the bus, there is always traffic so I would be on the road for hours.”

But that hasn’t stopped Little from making the trip. “I’m not well versed on the issues New Yorkers face,” said Little. “I would prefer to go home where I know the people who will benefit from re-election.”

Little said she was suspicious about absentee voting, citing that she has heard horror stories about it and wants her first time voting to be the “traditional way.”

Another student in Alabama has the same problem. Delonta Boyd, senior at Talladega College, is expecting to vote, but not in Alabama. “

“Alabama bleeds red,” says Boyd. “Red, meaning, Republican, so I know my voice will be muffled here. That’s why I’m going home to vote in Maryland where most of the districts there are voting ‘blue’.”

Boyd’s trip would involve traveling through three states before reaching his home state in Maryland. Although he is not looking forward to the trip, he is looking forward to voting and convincing his family to vote.

“This is my first time voting and hopefully, my parents will be voting for the first time,” said Boyd. “ I want to be able to share this moment with my parents and show them how imperative it is for all citizens to make their voices be heard, regardless of who they plan on voting for.”

Boyd said that he was very optimistic about our future, but only if Obama is re-elected.

Little said, “I’m hopeful but not optimistic about the country’s future. I think it will be a while before we see the change everyone is waiting for.”

Although both students aren’t clear about how their futures will pan out, one thing is for sure: voting in a place where they know their voices will be heard is the first step in the right direction.

The writer is a senior in the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communications