By Madison Lipman, 2023 Hinsdale Central High School Graduate

My name is Madison Lipman, and I am an 18-year-old from the suburbs. When it comes to talking politics in school, it can be a very heated issue. Until voting age, I hardly ever seemed to discuss how I felt politically as it seemed like an excellent way to isolate myself. Since being able to vote, that fear is now more in the past. Issues like gun violence, environmental problems, and the right to choose have motivated me to become politically engaged.

I think I’ve realized these issues are no longer something to be swept under the rug as they affect people daily. It is insane how many mass shootings we have had, both locally and as a nation. Currently, in the US in 2023, there has been an average of over one mass shooting daily. While I am still doing fun things and enjoying myself, I fear that one day I or a loved one will be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The thing that kills me the most, though, is that such incidents could be prevented with different regulations and enforcement of said regulations.

Moreover, it bothers me that people are economically incentivized to trash the planet. There are many green solutions to harness energy and thus protect vital habitats from mining which would help preserve biodiversity and wildlife. Yet, we continue to rely on fossil fuels and pollute faster than can be managed naturally by the environment.

Additionally, I am largely concerned about maintaining the right to choose. Regardless if people agree with the ethics of abortions, there are many factors that contribute in the decision to have one and so this right should not be infringed on.

These issues are very important to me and for the overall future of this country.  Everything starts with who is voted into office. It is so incredibly cool that regardless of my age, I can still be involved in such issues. While it may seem like your vote doesn’t matter or isn’t worth the hassle, every action and every vote counts. Simply voting for people representing your views can create a better, brighter, and safer future.