Make Your Vote Count on National Voter Registration Day
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Today is National Voter Registration Day, an effort that began in 2012 to engage more Americans in their civic right to vote. We’ve worked on a number of American history experiences over the years, giving us ample time and opportunity to reflect on our nation’s history as well as the opportunity and possibility that our democracy represents.
When our team worked on early concepts for the Smithsonian National Museum of American History’s Three West galleries, focused on American popular culture, we got to see up close and personal the objects that reveal the story of a constantly evolving nation, struggling with issues of identity and belonging – and civil rights. Whether it was ephemera from American Bandstand versus signs by angry white parents protesting the Black music played on the show, advertising art from Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show contrasted with letters and photos from Indigenous people performing in the show, or iconic objects from athletes who broke race and gender barriers, the complexities of our nation’s past and present were impossible to ignore. As a board member on another project thoughtfully reflected, the story of our nation is one of constant struggle, and sometimes failure, to live up to the glorious promise of the Constitution.
Thinkwell heard loud and clear from our team members, a few election cycles ago, that it was important that we support our employees’ right to vote and make it easy for them to do so. And we are committed to that, even with the additional challenges that COVID and a dispersed workforce bring. We’re sharing registration resources at our all-staff meeting and on our internal chat system, and reminding our team about our paid time off for voting policy.
While we instituted our voting-time-off policy because it felt like a good thing to do, we’ve come to understand that easing barriers to voting – like sharing information on how to register, voting options, and giving employees the flexibility to vote when and how they choose – is the right thing to do. We want equitable opportunities for everyone to help realize the “glorious promise” of the Constitution – and voting is key to that.
So happy National Voter Registration Day! We encourage you to check your registration status and register online (if allowed in your state) by visiting the National Voting Registration Day Website.
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