Cigarroa seniors attend the VMT Voter Registration Drive

The Magnet Tribune: Alehtze Martinez
VMT instructor Sean Gaynor helps Cigarroa High School students at VMT’s Voter Registration Drive on Sept. 5.

Alehtze Martinez, Staff Writer

Voting is a hard-won right involving many sacrifices, a VMT social studies teacher explained.

“The most important right of the United States of America is to have the right to vote for what we want for our country. Our early generations made many sacrifices to get us our voting rights. It’ll be a shame if we don’t use them,” AP Government instructor Sean Gaynor said on the way to Cigarroa to register seniors to vote.

Cigarroa High School seniors attended VMT’s voter registration drive in the Montemayor gym, on Sept 5. VMT also conducted voter registration drives at Nixon, Martin, and Early College high schools.

it’s important for the seniors to get registered to vote because it’s their voice and vote that counts.”

— Sean Gaynor, AP Government instructor

The importance of getting 18 year olds to register to vote is for them to start getting ready for the future, Gaynor said.

“How voting works is that our government makes decisions by our representatives, which is why it’s important for the seniors to get registered to vote because it’s their voice and vote that counts. That lets the government know what we need for our country,” Gaynor stated.

He explained the importance of the registration drives.

“By doing all these voter registration drives, and actually getting the seniors to register to vote, it’ll motivate them to actually vote when older, along with younger kids when they get to the voting age,” he added. “When younger kids get involved with voting, we’ll get more diverse leaders in our country.”

The presentation began with VMT director Dr. Martha Villarreal welcoming Cigarroa’s students. Villarreal told the seniors all about the enjoyment of voting, and her pleasure of being present with them during the voter registration drive.

Villarreal then introduced Sylvia Palumbo, a former Webb County Clerk and part of the Yes, I will Vote Coalition.

Palumbo told Cigarroa seniors the importance of voting, how it’s beneficial to the country, and why everyone should take advantage of their voting rights. In addition, she explained voting impacts how the country is run.

Villarreal then showed seniors a video on the history of voting along with its importance to society.

As the video ended Gaynor, along with VMT students, handed out pens with the voter registration forms to the seniors.

Villarreal helped the seniors by going step by step, telling them how to fill out the form.

A senior explained why she is interested in voting.

“More people of my own age will vote for our country because we are in a generation where there’s lots of us fighting to get our voices heard. Especially now, since there’s a lot of controversial issues going on. By getting us registered to vote, this will help us since this country is run by votes and electoral votes to let our government know what we want for our country. More people will contribute more to voting to get our voices heard,” Cigarroa senior Delilah Gonzalez said.

“If you’re old enough to die, you’re old enough to vote,” Gonzalez said, rephrasing a line from the video. “What I mean by that is that being 18 years old and having the ability to vote. It’s such a mature age. And I don’t think they should change it. At this point, I think everyone is old and mature enough to make good decisions for this country.”

Gonzalez said everybody should participate on election day.

“Voting is such an amazing gift we have, and everyone should take advantage of it because there are people out there that wish they had our right to vote, to get their voice heard,” Gonzalez said. “Which is why everyone should go out and vote.”