For young voters, November 2, 2010, like every election, is about our future. Even the 2008 presidential election. Yes, Barack Obama was a compelling candidate, but people turned out in record numbers because they believed that he had a plan for their future. This election is about the same thing.
While parties and partisan groups want to focus on the past, and debate about ideologies and the complexities of America's contradictions, young people are trying to make sure that they can afford to go to school, have a decent job, and have a safe place to live.
I know that a lot of people think that young voters won't turn out in the midterms. But I think we are going to see a higher turnout amongst young people than people expect for a couple of reasons.
First, we are the most connected generation ever. From Facebook to Twitter, we can communicate at a much faster pace than ever before...we definitely didn't have this in 2006, and even in 2008, social networking and new media were sort of new. But we've been practicing for two years. I can't speak about other cities but in the last round of primaries I was excited by what I saw on Facebook.
Second, we are the most critical generation ever. A lot of people call this skepticism, but not me. I am proud that our generation can read through the lines, and interpret the double speak that is often associated with politics. We are not just critical, we are informed.
Finally, we have nothing to lose. I know that there has been a lot of talk of about how apathetic this generation is but for many young voters, this is do or die time....all statistics highlight that our generation is the first to do worse than our parents.
Lastly, black people, especially young black people, cannot and should not be dismissed. The Mobilization and Change Project newly released survey reveals this without a doubt. No political party can afford to ignore the black youth vote, nor simply expect to bring them in at the last moment.