Students should push through voter suppression


The Appalachian Online

Joshua Farmer

In August, The Appalachian reported on the State Board of Elections denial of an on-campus voting site for Appalachian State University.

The decision to not host an on-campus voting site was made despite the statement that 72 percent of voters in Watauga County went to the former voting site in Plemmons Student Union.

The denial of an on-campus voting site is blatant voter suppression and arguments for the contrary fly in the face of that simple statistic that shows the site in the student union was clearly the most popular in the county.

I do not believe emphasizing the intent to suppress the student vote will further the cause to return a voting site to the campus because I also firmly believe that everyone involved is fully aware of what the denial of a campus site means and the intent of the decision.

I would much rather appeal to the students, Boone and Watauga County residents to consider the importance of the university to the area.  The students compose a large piece of the population of the county, and even though students leave after roughly four years, the interests and politics of one generation of students will carry over in some form to the next.

The university is undeniably important to the area and the students are the largest portion of the university. Once again, I don’t believe that anyone thinks the views of the students are not relevant to the area, as there would be no reason to deny on-campus voting. But, I do believe there are those who would rather another’s relevant views were passed over in favor of their own.

Above all else, I would encourage students to make a concerted effort to vote despite the obvious problems of time and transportation. Turning out to vote and showing that students care enough about being heard to deal with all the inconveniences and simply vote anyway is the only way to cull voter suppression in Watauga County.

Blankenship, a sophomore journalism major from Kernersville, is a news reporter.