There was a time when I thought my vote wouldn’t matter in an election. Considering there are well over 100 million people eligible to vote, one vote won’t change the outcome of an election. To this day, that remains true – one vote hasn’t changed the outcome of an election – but with so much at stake, I am here to tell you to vote if you can. It is this important.
If the whole “your vote counts” cliché doesn’t sit well with you, consider this: with the ratio of people being born with autism increasing, the next President will have to address this growing issue. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provided statistics regarding the increasing odds. Since Barack Obama was elected into office in 2008, the odds of someone being born with autism jumped from 1 in 88 to 1 in 68. This is a significant jump that is only made more significant when looking all the way back to 2000, when George W. Bush was elected into office – a time where the odds were 1 in 150.
With the odds increasing, we need a President who has an idea on how our country can come together and support the autism community. While there will always be a goal to reduce the odds, there needs to be someone who can set forth plans to help current families affected by Autism now and into the future. Our next President needs to find ways to improve access to autism services in the health care market for families, assist individuals on the autism spectrum transition into adulthood and develop independent living skills and increase autism awareness and advocacy throughout the country. For those who need some advice on how to go about searching the candidates and their stances on autism, I simply suggest that you use Google to search for the candidate’s name and autism. There should be plenty of relevant content on the candidates and their stances on autism now and going forward.
I am not here to advocate for one candidate over the others. I am simply here to advocate for you to get out there and vote if you can. You aren’t being edgy or sending a message by not voting. You are just as important to this country as everyone else and your vote does matter because at the very least, whether your candidate wins or loses, you are sending a message that you do care what the future of our country will be. If you or someone you know is affected by autism daily, this is too important of an election year to refuse to vote. The future of the autism community, while not often talked about during this election cycle, is at stake. That should be enough of a reason for you to go out and vote.