I come to you fresh off covering the vice presidential debate between Vice President Mike Pence and Sen. Kamala Harris at the University of Utah. What a unique opportunity to have such an event in our own backyard.
The year 2020 will go down as a pivotal year in history which, for many, makes this election season that much more imperative. The country is going through a pandemic that has reached a global scale. Issues like police brutality and police reform bring to the surface the pain and division the country is feeling. And, just last month, the country lost the iconic Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Recently, The Globe conducted an informal survey that brought into focus the issues that are on the minds of our student body. At the top of the list: global warming, racial inequality, and healthcare.
Locally, Utah’s COVID-19 numbers have spiked, averaging 1,144 cases a day this week according to the Utah Department of Health. The gubernatorial race will shape Utah’s future response to the pandemic. With Utah’s notoriously poor air quality, the development of projects like the inland port rank high on the list of students’ concerns.
One of the more poignant moments of the vice presidential debate came when the moderator, USA Today’s Susan Page, read a question from local eighth grader, Brecklyn Brown.
“When I watch the news, all I see is arguing between Democrats and Republicans. When I watch the news, all I see is citizen fighting against citizen.” Brown then questioned, “if our leaders can’t get along, how are the citizens supposed to get along? Your examples could make all the difference to bring us together.”
As the election draws near and tensions rise, Brown’s message serves as a reminder that leadership and civility still matter.
Whatever your political leaning, chances are the issues on this year’s ballot affect you in some way. In the current political landscape, it is easy to feel like one vote will not tip the scales. But in 2018, Ben McAdams defeated then-Rep. Mia Love by only 694 votes. Participating in the electoral process gives opportunity for voices to be heard.
The Globe is committed to bringing you student voices on the issues that impact students the most. To continue this, we extend an invitation to write a letter to the editor and follow our election coverage.