Student and community organizations alike came together on the campus of Coppin State University Sept. 25 to prepare for the 2012 general election taking place on Nov. 6.
The “Coppin’s Rocking the Vote” pep rally took place in front of the Parlett L. Moore Library Quad and featured Rep. Elijah E. Cummings as key note speaker and co-host.
“This election, I think, will affect the future of college students more than any that I’ve known of,” said Cummings. “This is crucial.”
Blue and yellow balloons blew in the wind and members of the campus’ Greek life strolled and party hopped to music as others gathered pamphlets, registration forms and t-shirts related to the election.
Students were given information on when to vote, where to vote, and how to register before the deadline arrives on Oct. 16 at 9 p.m.
Cummings stressed to the entire campus community the importance of voting and knowing what laws are being changed in what states.
“I think that these I.D. laws are nothing but a blatant attempt to suppress the African-American vote,” said Cummings, surrounded by supporters on the historically black university’s West Baltimore campus. “It also has the effect of suppressing the Latino and senior vote.”
Aside from college tuition rates, loans, and federal grants, issues such as health care and the future of the social security system are all topics that will directly affect young people in the upcoming election.
“There are many reasons that young people need to get out and be a part of this- it’s not just about them it’s about future generations yet unborn.”
Cummings also highlighted the fact that this year’s election will have a significant impact on the Supreme Court and future cases that go before the justices.
“The greatest thing is that the next president will appoint at least two or three members of the Supreme Court, which has already signaled that they are ready to overturn affirmative action.”
Also in attendance was Councilman Nick Mosby, of Baltimore’s 7th District.
“This election is critical- specifically for our young folks,” said Mosby. “They need to know not only what is going on in Baltimore, but around the country.”
“As it relates to voter suppression issues, a lot of these students are from Virginia and Pennsylvania so their families are directly impacted,” said Mosby, noting the makeup of the student body allows Coppin to have a say in matters that reach beyond Maryland.
“The rally was so exciting,” said LaTasha Woods, a senior Urban Arts major.
“Seeing the outpouring of students, community members and staff creatively emphasizing the importance of taking the first step in the voting process was inspiring.”
“Although I am already registered it was informative and good to see others signing up.”
Those leery of using a voting machine for the 2012 election need to look no further than the Voting Machine Warehouse at 301 N. Franklintown Road. On Oct. 19 at 9 a.m. election officials are asking that citizens come out to The Public
Demonstration of the Voting Machines for the Presidential General Election.
Early registration in Baltimore will take place from Oct. 27 to Nov. 1.
Voters who have had a change of address or name need to submit a new voter registration application as soon as possible.