www.whyville.net Nov 13, 2006 Weekly Issue

Guest Writer

Rock the Vote

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Everyone knows that once you turn 18 you've hit the legal age to vote in the United States, but some people wonder why they should even bother. Well, I'm here to tell you that every vote does count.

In 1990 a non-profit organization called Rock the Vote was founded in Los Angeles, CA by Jeff Ayeroff, co-chief of Virgin Records in response to "waves of attacks on freedom of speech and artistic expression". Rock the Vote's main focus is to get more youth voters and encourage positive social change by using celebrities such as musicians and actors to make voting a part of pop culture.

You may remember hearing about Rock the Vote back in 1994 when Laetitia Thompson, daughter of NBC reporter Lea Thompson, famously asked President Bill Clinton the question, "boxers or breifs?" in a commercial that premeired on MTV. They also brought about attention during the 2004 presidential elections by supporting the democratic candidate, John Kerry. By creating a mock-draft campaign that was sent to over 600,000 youth, a street team bus tour, public service announcements, and creating a CD that headlined Green Day's single "American Idiot," they increased the number of youth voter registration to 1.2 million by November 2, 2004, election day.

Rock the Vote's mission doesn't end after the polls close, either. They encourage youth across America to stand up for what they believe in and take action. You can get involved with Rock the Vote by asking your parents, and then checking out their website at www.rockthevote.com. Even if you're under the age of 18, you can join the street team and find other ways to get involved and encourage those who can vote to exercise their rights.

Thanks for taking time out to change the world,


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