LGBT Voters Need To Stay Informed

We must work together and vote to benefit the LGBT community now and in the future.

2016 could be a pivotal year for the LGBT community. With politics having been in the forefront of America’s mind before January first, we are facing a year that will most likely change our nation, and possibly even the world.

With the passing of federal marriage equality by the Supreme Court last year, many people have assumed that the Gay Rights Movement is over. Actually, this is just the beginning. Marriage equality is just that; it does not equate to full, equal human rights.

The LGBT community still faces tremendous obstacles. There are still twenty seven states in which employers can fire employees because of their orientation or gender identity. There are states with laws in place to protect bigots from any recourse from their discriminatory behaviors.

The transgender community, LGBTs of color, immigrant LGBTs, and international LGBT couples especially battle prejudice and unfair laws mixed with crooked politics.

Any election year can be tension-filled, however, it seems that 2016 is one that is even more so than usual. America has become incredibly polarized dividing people into extreme right-wing or left-wing politics. Long gone are middle-of-the-road politicians and voters. Instead, people like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz battle it out against Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton.

Conservatives are very hungry to get the White House back after Obama’s eight years. Liberals want anything but that to happen. The numbers are close: polls show the candidates are all still jockeying for position. This one will be a nail-biter to the very end.

The greatest thing that LGBT voters can do is to get educated. To really study the candidates. It is vital to know who they are, and exactly where they stand on the issues that affect us the most. Look at their voting records, if applicable. It is far better to make an informed vote, rather than just going along party lines.

Of course, voting is also of the utmost importance. Voter turn outs have been declining for several years. With so much on the line, we need more voters than ever. Now more than ever, our voices need to be heard.

Every vote truly does count, and every vote not casted is a vote against the LGBT community. As an educated, united community, we have the power to elect a president who will help us and our causes. We must work together and vote to benefit the LGBT community now and in the future.