Every American should read this Harvard professor's letter about the importance of voting
Harvard College/YouTube

Tom Dingman, the dean of freshman at Harvard University, wrote a letter to all the students under his stewardship a few months ago.

He sent it following the very first presidential debate back in September to the class due to graduate in 2020.

No matter who your preferred candidate is, it still serves as an important reminder to everyone why exercising your right to vote is so important.

'Bad officials are elected by good citizens who do not vote.' - George Jean Nathan

Dear Members of the Class of 2020:

One of the primary privileges of being a United States citizen over the age of 18 is being able to vote. I write to encourage you to think about this, especially in light of the presidential debates, which began last evening, and the deadlines to request an absentee ballot.

I'm sure more than one of you is thinking: 'Why vote?' A simple answer would be 'because you can.' In some countries, people fight for this right and often have no say about the policies that govern them. The United States needs citizens to be engaged and to speak out. By casting your vote, you are potentially putting someone in office who can go to work on the matters of importance to you. By not voting, you really have no grounds for complaining.

Perhaps Abraham Lincoln said it best when he remarked: 'Elections belong to the people. It is their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will have to sit on their blisters.'

Please consider registering to vote if you have not already.

Hoping all is well.


Tom Dingman

Dean of Freshmen

Harvard College

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