Week 10 – Lessons in Leadership – Elections/State Questions

During class we looked at the state questions in detail but did not have enough time to discuss candidate elections. The United States has experienced one of the most contentious elections for President in our history. How can a voter engage intelligently in choosing a presidential candidate during a time when a significant amount of information is biased or factually incorrect? How can you be sure to learn about policies that interest you and come to effective conclusions about candidates stances and beliefs? This response should not be an endorsement for a candidate, rather a description of how you believe we can encourage others (and ourselves) to engage in the political process effectively and accurately.


  • Ri Hao Yong

    My thoughts about electing a suitable candidate is that we should choose the candidate that shows their true side to the people and not mask his or her self with positivity and charisma to try to win over the people and get elected as president. My mom always tells me that in this world we live in, human beings like us are only grouped into 2 groups which is good or bad. There is no one who is good and bad at the same time. A good person will never be succumbed to badness and a bad person will naturally have a smell of badness surrounding them. I think maybe you won’t believe me, but you can see for yourself that a good presidential candidate has a good reputation and history trailing behind him while a bad presidential candidate would have many issues and charges trailing behind him. Good attracts good and bad attracts bad. A candidate who really want to serve the people and bring goodness to his or her country can be automatically felt by the people. The way they speak, the way they serve, they way they look at others, it will all be sincere, real, full hearted and not fake, masked or made up. As Chinese, we have a saying that if you do good, goo things will happen to you, if you do bad, even if you try hard to cover it, it will still come back and haunt you and you will receive the consequence, its called 报应. As a voter, i think one should try and look through the candidates mask and find out their true identity and nature, even if one candidate is only a little bit better than the other, choosing the better one could lead to a more harmonious and safe country. Vote carefully for a better future! (even if i can’t vote)

  • Zachary Canaday

    It seems that almost every media outlet is biased, affecting both parties. This ranges from television networks, to newspapers, and information posted on the internet. Much of the information about each candidate has been questionable, leading to the voters becoming often confused. The best way to obtain reliable information in a situation like this is to engage in multiple sources, both on the left and right, and base an opinion off of that. It is important to hear from both sides and draw a conclusion somewhat in the middle. Another option is to do a great amount of research and discover the reputable, unbiased sources. This option may seem difficult in the modern era but is necessary and a duty of every American to research each candidate and determine which one will benefit the country best.

  • Chang Ting Shuo

    Today is a whole new experience for me, because I have never discussed the policy during class. Especially, the topic about agriculture is the one which most attracted my attention. As we know, Oklahoma has lots of grass and farm, so in my opinion, maybe it has the greater population of people engaging in farm than other place. So the changes about agriculture will be seriously observed and researched. Simultaneously, when today’s election worker were talking about these state questions, it also can help us more familiar with the coming changing policies.

  • Jillian Coats

    This upcoming election has been an eye-opening first election. During this election, I believe that it is important to seek out only verified facts and take unverified rumors lightly. I think that looking at bi-partisan sites that present information that reflects both sides as well as looking at multiple credible sources and not just one. However, no matter what you may personally believe, I believe that it is important to look at perspectives from a different standpoint to make an educated decision or belief-system that weighs both the pros and cons. If I could encourage all voters, I would say to truly educate yourself on politics because you never know what may interest or surprise you.

  • During this particular presidential election there seems to be more information put into media about each of the candidates both true and false. I believe one of the most important ways to determine what information you should take into consideration when forming your opinion and eventually voting, would be looking at a variety of sources throughout the process. When deciding who to vote for I think its important to know what’s happening on both sides of the argument. I think some people get caught up in the image and name of the political party. In all, I believe the most important thing is what the candidate truly believes in and their morals and how that will effect the decisions they make when they become president. When you truly get to know more about the people running by the way they act, the decisions they make, and the way they treat others, I think it offers an insight you can’t get from what the media tells us. Therefore, in order to make an intelligent decision and become knowledgable on the topics that interest you the most, I believe one must explore a variety of platforms offering an assortment of knowledge.

  • Lindsie Dortch

    I completely agree that the presidential election this year is controversial. For example, both of the candidates are really passionate about their beliefs that cause them to act out in an unprofessional manner. In my opinion, a voter should vote based off of their own beliefs and then compare the beliefs with what each candidate is saying. As far as knowing about the policies, it is best that people go and do their research on each candidate and then come to a conclusion.

  • Caleb Robinson

    I think the only thing that can be learned from watching the debates is the character of each nominee. The facts and policies are rarely addressed during these debates, rather personal attacks and defenses seem to be the norm. I would say if you want to learn about the character of the candidates, watch the debates and the news. If you want to learn the actual policies of the different nominees, research newspapers and websites and talk to people who have a better idea of the current situation. There are plenty of reliable websites throughout the internet that give each candidate’s views on each particular topic such as abortion, immigration, foreign policy, etc. Newspapers like the free subscription we have to the NY times is very informative. I would also recommend going to forums. I went to the Vista’s November 2016 Forum that discussed both of the main candidates and the states questions. It was really interesting to hear the different opinions of others in a respectful environment. In summary, pull as much information as you can from as many reliable sources as possible.

  • Sarah Tierney

    Learning about politics are hard, because just about everything you read is biased on which party. If you are listening or reading something that is biased you can almost agree to something that they are saying, if they are good at convincing. Something that I have learned in my own experiences of trying to understand politics is to try to find an news outlet that stays mostly natural. Also keeps things in Layman’s terms were the public can really understand what is being said to us. Another thing that I have found most helpful to really understanding both sides of the story, is just asking your peers about what they think. Seeing different perspectives of a topic can really help shape what you want your idea or opinion to be. In my short political life I have learned to listen more than to speak or shout your beliefs. You will learn more if you just listen and observe what people are saying and feeling.

  • Lindsey Lance

    This election is for sure a big election for our country, and it is important for everyone to be educated on what and who they are voting for. Being educated about both candidates can be crucial when voting because when you vote your vote actually counts and does make a difference for our future president. I believe that if you do not vote then you should not have a say in who wins. That being said, even gaining knowledge on our state questions and voting on them can impact our state in a positive way. When it comes to voting it is important to educate yourself with the right and correct information so that we can better out state, country, and lives.

  • Emily Holmes

    I believe that this election is going to be a very interesting one, if not the most interesting in American history. I also think in this election it is crucial to look past the person and look at what they stand for. There are two totally opposite ends of the spectrum. For example you have someone totally against abortion and then the other candidate is for abortion up to the due date of the baby. To be sure to learn about politics, you have to properly inform yourself. As teenagers, most of us are probably 18 or 19, we have to find out what we believe for ourselves and not just what our parents tell us or want us to believe. It can be hard for someone our age sometimes to make informed decisions. But by watching all of the debates and finding information from credible sources you can make an informed decision on who you believe should be the head of our country.

  • Honestly I am concerned about the 2016 Presidential Election.
    It is sad for me to express that I am learning that unfortunately the choices we have been given have not been the best choices. I cannot possibly vote for a presidential candidate who easily disrespects President Obama, and who is promoting so much fear and hatred in our country, who has insulted so many minorities, women, and my Mexican people and continues to do so without any regrets. On the other side is Hillary Clinton. Although I do not agree with everything she supports or has done in the past, I do feel she is the better option and the most qualified candidate to be our next president of the United States.
    Some of the issues in our society that really concern me are: the environmental degradation, the economy of this country and the negative impact to our laborers. As a Hispanic leader, I worry about immigration reform and the negative impact for immigrant communities.
    The best I can do is to encourage others to be informed about the candidates and learn how to identify the issues that affect us and our community. It is very important to do some research to learn about the local and state levels where there are different candidates running for office in different districts. One must evaluate and select the best candidate that offers some benefit to our community. My advice is to join a civic group and invite friends and family to express concerns about issues in your community. Register and vote, let your voice be heard.

  • Elina Varmia

    Voting is always extremely important, but in addition, it is important to study the candidates well before deciding who to vote. Knowing the candidates’ policies and opinions on issues is an important part of making a decision. To find an accurate information about the candidates, one needs to be careful with the sources she or he is using to seek information. Facebook or any other social media can easily be biased because it often is affected by the person’s opinion who posted it. Therefore, it is smart to rely on more neutral sources, such as news channels or other more formal authors. Although, candidates’ own website talk in favor to its candidates, they explain broadly the candidate’s view points on issues. However, at first one should educate oneself about the issue, to have an opinion. If finding a reliable information online feels difficult, I would recommend to ask some professor if they knew any good sources, or going to the library. Librarians can help to find more reliable websites, news papers, or magazines that have unbiased information.

  • Cali Passerman

    I think one of the most important things we can do is ignore that basic media sources and especially social media. There are so many articles on facebook and twitter that are in no way reliable but come across as so. It is important to get your information from a variety of resources, and you should research these resources prior to getting content from them. Most popular news stations, especially the morning news shows, are biased. While looking at the candidates’ websites for their platforms gives you an overview of their views and goals, their writers of course make them sound good, while all of their goals might not be a good idea! Before voting it is smart to look at resources similar to the one we received in class on Tuesday, resources that simply state the facts without taking a side, leaving you to form your own opinion. Sometimes you will have to go to a source that gives more of an explanation because the jargon the ballot/the candidates use can be confusing to someone not trained in politics.

  • Destiny Henry

    If a voter believes that voting truly makes a difference they need to always check the source of information when making heavy decisions. When I look up facts or speak to person I make sure to check the background and credibility. When I looked up the state questions I watched for the language that was used. If I could tell that they used more persuading words I would change my source. I like to find sources and talk with people that can give me both sides of an argument, speaking as non biased as possible. It is important to get the bases of an argument then make implications not the other way around. Also, if one has problem finding sources they should always ask for help. UCO’s librarians are well equipped to point one in the right direction. Making decisions about voting or even life decisions should come from what you believe in so make sure to receive the truth and both sides to an argument before taking a side.


    I’ve always sought out the best way to operate an efficient society that is at the same time free and full of opportunity.

    The first thing to understand is that no political party can help you. The only way to create true independence in your life is to become self-reliant, create a financial freedom plan, and stick with your plan no matter who is in power.

    The average voter will spend more time soaking up news from special interest group controlled media sources than do their due diligence to connect the dots on how the Elephants and Asses poison and hypnotize the masses.

    It’s funny how hackers have uncovered this year’s biggest stories, while mainstream media ‘journalists’ try to cover them up.

    I challenge millennials and above to vote with their lifestyle. Since mine is to live holistically with the universe and shed light on t he negativity and darkness produced by forces we can not control.

    What if I told you:

    That no matter how much information you share with your friends about the corrupt government $ our liberties disappearing, 97% just won’t care until its too late & only then will they wonder how we allowed this to happen.

  • Sylvia Cook

    I would say to choose a person in this election, you need to listen to what the candidates say themselves. Not the media, not one about the other. If they are talking about a certain issue that you don’t understand look up what it means and if that is something you agree with then you know who you’re voting for.

  • Emily T Womble

    Inherently, democracy is biased. The whole point is to vote for someone who believes in the same policies as you, or to vote for someone who will implement policies that you believe will be effective in this country. In terms of voting based on facts, there are many websites that fact check candidates throughout the election process. They are often announced at debates before, after, and during. If someone wants to learn a candidates’ stance on certain policies, then they can simply go to that candidate’s website. They can watch the candidate give speeches and listen to what the candidate says during interviews and debates about certain topics. There are already many resources voters can use to make informed votes; the real problem is educating voters on these resources. Rather than watching and believing biased CNN and FOX news reports, voters should be educated to go directly to the candidate’s websites and come to their own conclusion on said candidate and their policies.

  • Yukihiro Hitomi

    The most important thing you should do to avoid to be manipulated by incorrect information is try to doubt the information you get. You must not believe what you hear until you see it. That is the way that I do to everything that happens to my life. Since all the information that the TV program covers and what the candidates say are biased, or sometimes they are even lies. You have to be intelligent necessary to judge them fairly and accurately. That is what I want to do.

  • Sarah Mattox

    Politics happens to be something I am particularly passionate about, especially in the last couple years, and I have always tried to set truth finding as a priority over partisanship. I would say the first step in choosing a presidential candidate should probably be visiting each candidates official website to confirm their stances independent of other media. The next step is researching background information about the political issues each candidate is addressing. Doing this research is extremely important in understanding the issues in their entirety because each candidate places their own importance on issues and reflect their opinions in discussing them; sometimes, little fact is truly presented in these discussions. I personally like to steer clear of news articles when I do this kind of research and stick with actual websites, such as a website providing archives on legislation, supreme courts decisions, and other government documents. Beyond this, I also like to listen to global news to get a better understanding of what our nation is involved in foreignly. In short, I really try to stay away from typical national media in our country unless it is for less opinionated issues like natural disasters, business, or trivial national headlines. I think that if we as citizens just put forth the extra effort to find the facts rather than getting fed what the media puts out to the public, then our political participation will go a long way.

  • McKenna Oathout

    Either Hillary or Trump are going to be our next President. Being intellectually aware of each candidate and their beliefs is very important on determining a prepared and equipped President. I think a voter can engage without a bias by truly learning about each presidential candidate and who they were before these deeply biased commercials. Knowing who they supported in the past and being able to have a true reason why people cast their vote for a specific candidate. Although, it is important to watch the debates and keep up on the news, that can not be our only reliable source. I suggest going to isidewith.com and researching the most popular social issues in 2016 and compare our own morals to a one to one scale with the candidates.

    Hillary has been in politics for 40 years now while Trump has not. It truly is hard to compare one another when each one is in such a diverse place, but knowing what you believe is honestly the most important. When voting, we should think that our vote is the make or break it vote for the entire election so we have more motivation to do the morally correct thing in our opinion.

  • Linn Brusletten

    Being from Norway, it surprises me how the U.S. media portraits the upcoming election. I come from a country where our main sources of political news are apparently unbiased. A mandatory, nation-wide fee, paid by all Norwegian citizens that own a television, funds the main television station in Norway. Thus, political parties, commercial entities, etc. do not influence the conveyed information. This provides an objective outlook on political circumstances and information. The news reporters do not convey their own opinions, but simply presents the facts of the case, or interview object’s opinions. I believe this is a good way to keep people informed without greatly influencing their stance.
    I believe it is important for Americans to educate themselves and seek information from various sources. I also believe it is important not to be too rigid in one’s opinions, and not to let the personality of the candidates overshadow the actual political matters. Firsthand sources, such as live interviews and debates, provide a clearer view on the candidates’ actual stances and beliefs. Politics can be complicated and it is important to educate oneself on the various topics being discussed. I would encourage others to seek unbiased information, or at least look for information from various sources, and make up their own opinion. Thereafter, I would recommend them to investigate the opinions of the candidates and choose a stand that is closest to their own opinion. Furthermore, I would urge the media to focus more extensively on the actual political stances of the candidates instead of their personality traits.

  • Two of the best ways for a voter to engage intelligently in choosing a presidential candidate are to read the news and watch the presidential debates. Nowadays, a massive amount of information can be delivered to us in just one click. Therefore, when I am overwhelming with information, I usually stop reading and give myself more times to think about what I just read and begin to ask questions: “Which sources are more credible? What are the different points of view?” I believe that being able to observe and understand different points of view of the same issue will help me to figure out the pros and cons of such issue and even of the presidential candidates. Then from that, I will see which of these policies or presidential candidates will make my benefits outweigh the risk or harm to me and my community.
    To learn more about my policies of interest, I will need to read the state questions while examining the benefits grant to me from these policies. Government and credible news websites such as CNN and the New York Times are websites that will provide me with more credible information about the policies as well as the stances of each candidate. After reading and observing the candidates’ reactions to such policies, I will be able to make my choices more precise. Moreover, I will need to talk to my peers and other members in my family and community and observe their points of view about my interest policies. Since different people will interpret the policies differently, being able to exchange thoughts and ideas with others is another way to help me figure my stance and the candidates’ stance.

  • Amanda Goh

    In order to avoid bias or incorrect information about the candidates running, we need to be aware of what we are reading online. For example, a status written about how horrible Trump is or about all the bad deeds Hillary has done has no substantial value, because there is no proof. Instead, we need to learn to filter the information we’re reading online and actually start researching efficiently. We can encourage others to engage in the political process by educating them. For example, they should research each candidate’s speeches and debates. Often times, what the candidates say in speeches are taken out of context and twisted around. Therefore, people start spreading wrong facts about the candidates. This is why it is essential for us to understand exactly what each candidate stands for and whether we believe their value statements as well.

  • Emily Acuna

    Though we did not talk about how to find an unbiased answer in class I feel that there is a few ways to find it. One way would be to watch the elections and engage in the elections. The elections are times when the presidents are put on the spot, therefore there natural thoughts will come out. Another way would be to do your research. Research how they were before the presidential election and look at them now. Have they really changed? or is just for show? These are questions you should ask yourself while researching information. Lastly, it would be good to familiarize yourself with surrounding countries, because what our president does, can effect them. How will other countries react? Will this send us to war? Those are a couple questions to ask, when familiarizing yourself with other countries.

  • I feel that every voter should know his or her own values, morals and where they stand on today’s social issues before they choose a presidential candidate to endorse. It is often easy to be persuaded by public opinion on who to vote for and who not to vote for. Facts often get mixed with opinions and today’s media makes it complicated to know right from wrong. I feel that it would be beneficial to all for one to make his or her once stance, then vote on the candidate who’s values line up the most with theirs. In today’s society, nearly every public figure is corrupt in his or her own way, we have to choose the lesser of two evils.

  • Forest Deming

    I think that the two party political system in America causes many of the problems that affect politics and the media today. With only two major parties people feel that they must pick a side on politics, even though they might not fit entirely into either side. A departure from the two party system would make people feel that they are not being forced to choose sides and that they could make better decisions when they vote. Ending the two party system would also force politicians to campaign on their own policies and ideas instead of their respective party’s, showing their true character. Leaving the two party political system would allow voters to more freely choose a candidate, and would force candidates to campaign on real ideas instead of those from their party.

  • Lydia Johnson

    If they have been in politics, it is imperative to go through and look into at anything they have supported in the past. If they have held office, that is normally a good explanation as to what they believe in and what they will do in their next office. Where they come from and where they have held their offices says a lot about what they believe. And then the obvious, what their party affiliation is, should line up with the candidate that is representing said party. Through understanding an unbiased explanation of each political party, you should have a greater understanding of what the candidate is representing. Although there are exceptions to every candidate, the more research on what that they done in the past should be a good start to understanding who they are and what they believe in.

  • Lauren Walker

    I believe in order for a voter to make the best, most informed decision, one should take advantage of all available resources. I believe this election is one of the most childish like and immature game of back and forth that our nation has seen in a long time. With that being said there is a lot of misleading information as well as opponents slandering one another. I think watching the debates would help a voter cast an informed vote as well as taking advantage of listening to them speak in public. When trump came to TulsaIi took full advantage of going and listening to hear what he had to say. I think just researching in general will build ones knowledge and will be persuaded one way or another with the candidate with the most similar beliefs to their own.

  • Karrigan Kimball

    I was never into politics until I turned 18 years old. I didn’t understand the significance of educating yourself of the presidential candidates, until it was time to vote. You see all sorts of biased opinions and rumors all over social media about how candidate A or B is such an awful person, unfit to be president, etc; In order to be able to have an educated argument with someone, and for them to be able to respect your opinion and maybe even change their view on who to vote for, your information must be accurate and honest. Voting is so extremely important, and especially for our generation. This world is so focused on being politically correct that an individual may vote for whoever they see less negativity from on twitter, facebook, etc; With that mindset, the most fit for president will not be elected. More than anything, I believe we just have to look for the facts instead of believing the first thing we hear.

  • Marcia Clemmons

    Being politically involved today is very hard (not to say it has ever been easy) but the individual’s perception of events and policies of politicians can be altered due to the news media, advertising and the internet than ever before. Finding the truth in a lot of twisted sources is very hard. The best strategy I would recommend to voters like me, who are trying to find the truth and the real policies to really dig in and do the research. Be an investigative journalist and do your own inquiry. We as voters have the right and the responsibility to be well informed on the topics, events and the candidates.
    The closest news source you can find that is unbiased is actually international news stations and newspapers. However, they do not always cover American politics, therefore use a variety of news sources and double check stories on Snopes.com. For information on your local representatives who are running again, you can check to see how many bills they have introduced and how they voted online at the house.gov. For new local candidates you can research them on votesmart.org and their website if the candidate has one. For state questions the best source I would say is the okpolicy.org.
    This is one of the most unstable elections in our country’s history and it is tough for us new voters. Let’s hope it does not start a trend for the next couple of years.

  • Jake Robertson

    In today’s age there are more media sources than there ever have been before. Regardless of this fact, it is nearly impossible to find an unbiased media source. As voters, it is the American peoples’ job to decipher what they believe is the truth. The best way I have found to uncover the truth is through unaffiliated media sources and reading through copious amounts of information. Third parties are often indifferent towards the parties and give more reliable information than major news sources that have known affiliations with specific parties. While not being 100% reliable, this is a good way to sniff out bias and see what people with varying views believe. This practice also involves reading the news articles that are obviously biased. By doing this, and by reading into both sides of the spectrum, readers can better understand all views and find a middle ground as to what they believe is the truth. With both candidates spouting nonsense and slander at each other all of the time, it is important that we educate ourselves with a variety of different sources and make educated voting decisions.

  • Mason Belcher

    Most information we hear about today is biased and incorrect. I believe in order to learn about politics while avoiding all of the incorrect information is to go to real sources. Most people go to social media to form their opinions and decide who they think is best. Doing in depth research on the candidates views will help a lot. Going to reliable resources and doing the research yourself plays a big role too.

  • Mario Figueroa

    In today’s day and age, we live in a country where much of the information that we gather comes from following the masses. Instead of taking the time to educate ourselves and making our own decisions, we follow the crowd and what they are saying. When talking about the presidential race, we see many individuals jumping on a bandwagon, not taking the time to research about candidates, and instead making their decision based on what the crowd is saying. As United States citizens, it should be our responsibility to educate ourselves when referring to a presidential candidate, and know exactly what their plan is, based on what we have learned, and not from we have heard. Taking the time to watch the presidential debates, attend rallies, and inform ourselves from reliable resources, are all things we can do to ensure the right candidate becomes president. Another thing we can improve on is, as student leaders it should be our role to not only help the future generation become knowledgable, but also serve as a resource for others in our community. Doing this will not only help that the best president get elected, but will serve as a way for our country to be aware of things that are taking place where we live. Because this year presidential campaign is so contentious, it should be our duty to vote because we know the facts and not the opinions.

  • Riley McKinney

    I take full responsibility in not being as involved in todays issues as much as I should. However, I feel as if in todays modern society, peoples vote are ultimately what they see on Facebook or Twitter. The people today have an issue with forming their own opinion and go strictly off of what they hear. I encourage everyone to look at the big picture and not just be close minded. For example, when you live in a wealthy suburb and want to vote no to SQ777, look at the people whose farming is allowing them to live. When people will stop being selfish and put themselves in others shoes, we will truly make america great again.

  • Hannah Mette

    I believe the best possible way to be an informed citizen when voting for the president is through research and using the resources that the internet provides. One resource that I really enjoyed was the “isidewith.com”. It wasn’t a biased website for the most part. I was able to answer questions about my stance with different policies and then rank how important they were to me. That made it so that they told me who I sided with based on the issues that our country is facing right now. I also think it is important to go to the source. I went to the website for each candidate and saw what they truly thought was important from their own view. Another resource is watching the debate live because then you can see their stance live instead of just watching commentary on the debates. Commentary is good to an extent, however usually it takes statements out of context and skews what the candidate was truly saying.

  • Since I am not an American citizen so I don’t have the obligation to vote. However, I have learned on thing from the election and the campaign,that is to find out what people really want. One of the goals for campaigns and elections is to get as much as support from voters even if the speeches are based on biases or something incorrect. Seemingly, people vote for the candidate who mention their benefits and hope he or she will keep the promises made at the speeches or lots of files. It turns out that things do not necessarily go in the way voters expect. From my perspective, the essence of politics is for people and the ultimate goal for winning some campaigns is also about people. Therefore, it doesn’t matter what candidates promise, but it is about the actual benefits that people can have. What interests me in politics is to see what it is actual like in our society and take all these criteria as standard for each candidate and campaign. It is also known that what you really care about doesn’t really come true. Here is another thing for politics that it is not about winning but it is about keeping promise and make it come true. It can be a long process but ultimately we have to do it. That’s my view for politics.

  • Victoria Hodge

    I think that the biggest problem my generation has with the election is where they get information from. Sometimes it is so easy to get caught up in things you might see on Facebook and then it is even easier to pass that knowledge along to others as credible. The whole process of knowledge distribution is like a big chain of gossip and it will get to the point where we aren’t sure what is fact versus what is fiction. I think to get credible knowledge about the election you must search hard for the facts, especially with how the media can take sides and only show part of what the real story is. Instead of relying on others to do the fact checking we should take a stance and do a bit on our own. Now of course I say this and I must remind myself that I need to do some for myself, when I sometimes find myself reading stories on Facebook and taking them as face value. I also think it is necessary to keep an open mind and view the candidates from all angles. Think about who it will affect and how others might view the candidate. Imagine the situation bigger than itself, who will be the right hands of the candidates if elected. In my opinion it is always important to try to be unbiased and collect all the facts of the story before coming to a full conclusion.

  • Kira Douglas

    I struggle with these questions myself and even found myself asking my mother for better understanding of the election and how to vote. I personally do not believe any of the candidates are worth my vote, i do not want to have to vote for the lesser of two evils. I think it is hard to find factual information on how to decide on who to vote for, for our 2016 presidential candidates through the internet because not everything we read is true. Though by watching the interviews and the debates and actually listening to them speak and what they plan on doing with our country is a good way to decide. Try to understand the true meaning behind their words and their actions because a lot is a steak here.

  • Juan Estrada

    I think that in today’s society many of us do not got out and actually look up information and see if something that was stated is actually true. We just sit back and see lies posted on Facebook and Twitter. I think in order to encourage others and myself to engage in the political process is to actually become involved and know what is going on. As student leaders it is our job to know what is going on in our communities, and what we can do about. For these elections you can become informed and help others to become informed, and that will help.There are a lot of information that comes out biased, so just ask a teacher if they know any sites that offer whole information that does not have opinions. I think in order to encourage them we just have to say that this next president has our future in their hands. We have a voice in this country, so why would you not choose to use it. At the end of that day if you chose to use your voice, become informed, and help others in the process then you have engaged in the political process effectively and accurately.

  • Kaylee Neff

    With having more technology in today society, we as citizens become exposed to all forms of slander in social and multi-media articles which makes it hard decide on unbiased information. It’s truly hard to engage in political campaigns during the election but if one truly is committed to finding the truth then the person needs to research the candidate from verified published third party sources. In order to learn about policies one must get information from both sides of the policy then one must decide what they believe in or not and see which candidate fits their needs as a registered voter. The advice I give to a potential voter is to research multiple sources and come up with your own conclusions rather than listen to others trying to sway your opinion. Voting especially within your state can make a huge impact on your community so we must take action because it’ll affect all of us .

  • Victoria Plunkett

    I think it is of the upmost importance to become an intelligent and informed voter. He most crucial aspect of becoming informed is finding a reliable and non-biased source that will teach you about the candidates. While this may seem like a daunting task, many people do not truly investigate what sources are biased or not. It is so important to get the hard facts for yourself to make an educated voting decision instead of relying on the median portrayal of a specific candidate. Now with social media being as active as it is, many more people are tuning into the election, but the number of voters who are voting based off of biased reports is astounding. Find a credible source and educate yourself on what the candidates do or do not support, then most importantly, vote!

  • Laura Kleinmann

    A person can watch the debates. While this format can still be biased, very biased it allows the voter to become more familiar with the candidates. The voter can also read as much information from as many different sources as possible. Sorces that are know to support both sides because generally the truth will lie right, smack in the middle. An educated voter needs to gain access to the issues being discussed where this before law books or something similar. In today’s society it is almost impossible to gain entirely truthful information, all the voter can do is get close.

  • Laura Kleinmann

    A person can watch the debates. While this format can still be biased, very biased it allows the voter to become more familiar with the candidates. The voter can also read as much information from as many different sources as possible. Sorces that are know to support both sides because generally the truth will lie right, smack in the middle. An educated voter needs to gain access to the issues being discussed where this before law books or something similar. In today’s society it is almost impossible to gain entirely truthful information, all the voter can do is get close.

  • Laura Kleinmann

    A person can watch the debates. While this format can still be biased, very biased it allows the voter to become more familiar with the candidates. The voter can also read as much information from as many different sources as possible. Sorces that are know to support both sides because generally the truth will lie right, smack in the middle. An educated voter needs to gain access to the issues being discussed where this before law books or something similar. In today’s society it is almost impossible to gain entirely truthful information, all the voter can do is get close.

  • Since during the election, a lot of significant information will be biased and factually incorrect, and therefore many voters can not get the accurate information they want to know from the local media. In my opinion, voters can search the information from nonpartisan online voter information websites or foreign media and websites. Besides, watching president debates is also a very important way for you to learn about the candidate. In addition, the voters can collect the records of the candidate and analyse the records.

  • There are some news channels that are often biased toward a candidate. As a Mass Communication-Professional Media major, I have been taught that the media is there to inform and give facts to the viewers and audience. The viewers and audience should then decide on their own what they believe in. I believe that as voters we should think about where we stand on certain issues. The next step we should take, is to research what each candidate believes in. One way that voters can be well informed about the candidates stance, is by going to the candidates website and seeing if what they believe matches what you believe. Another way that you can get to know the candidates is by following them on their social media accounts. I believe that it is important to vote, but I also believe that voters should be well informed before making a decision.

  • Remington Dean

    A person can go to reliable sources and not just believe what they see on social media. Also, a person can watch the debates and see which candidate they side with more and which policies they like more. Also, a person should read more than just one source to find accurate and precise information. Perhaps the best thing a person can do is form their own opinions and believe what they truly want to and not what others tell them to believe. Then find the candidate that best represents what they believe in.

  • Madison Gaines

    I think no matter what, people will be biased. I constantly hear things from my parents about the candidates that sway my opinion but then I remember there is more than one side and more than one right answer to the issues at hand. I honestly believe if people will stop listening to the news and internet and do their own research, maybe they will form an opinion of their own rather than listening to what others say and believe.

  • Ben Raulston

    One way to understand and to become informed about the presidential election is to check where the information is coming from. Any information endorsed by a president or a party is likely to be biased. Doing research and listening to the candidates firsthand is the most productive and unbiased way to learn their views. There are also sites that give both opinions over a topic and these can be helpful as well.

  • Mackenzie Black

    If you want to know the facts for this presidential election, you have to do research on your own time. If one were to just listen to whatever the media was telling them their opinion would be skewered. Also, once you do look up information compare it to other websites to make sure it is a reliable source. One thing I did to compare my views with the possible presidential elections was take the quiz on isidewith.com. It really helped break down what are some of the key talking points during this election and how and who you side with.

  • Shadow McCain

    Engaging the the voting process is one of the most important dudtys of a United States citizen. It is one of the many ways you can make your voice heard and possibly the most important. You should ways make sure the information you base your vote on is factual. You can insure this by using a creditable new source. But in some cases, like this year, it is seamingly impossible to find a straight answer. I find one of the best ways to discover a candidates true intentions is to follow there speeches and stances on issues throughout the years. If they are stating there opention is something now see if that was what they have been saying consistently. The most important aspect of the voting process is to be informed. Voting blindly is ignorant and a waist of your vote. You want to insure that your vote is going to help you and your country in the future.

  • In order to be properly informed and prepared to vote, one must do their own research instead just believing the first thing they hear. Though it may be hard to rummage through all the biased information, it must be done in order to form your own opinion. Watching the live debates also helps you get a feel for the candidates, because they are put on the spot. There are even a few websites you can look at that solely present facts, such as Politifact. To encourage others to engage in politics, we must make them realize that the things we vote on could potentially alter our lives drastically. A lot of people complain about our government, but won’t even vote to help change it. I believe if we can make people realized that we are the ones who can change the our government, then they would be more than happy to vote.

  • Erin Drewke

    I believe that most of the inaccuracies in the presidential election are due to the media. Media tries to direct people’s focus to topics that excite and bring drama much like any other television program. I believe the best way to navigate through all of the fluff in the election is to pick sources wisely. We have to investigate where information is coming from and if it is credible or even relevant. Another way to successfully engage in the political process, and the most important, is to listen to the candidate’s own words and what their ideas are for America’s future. This includes watching or reading transcripts of speeches of candidates, researching a candidate’s platform and proposals and looking into who the candidates are likely to place in key positions are all things one should consider doing to fully evaluate the candidates. This is the approach I have made towards my voting decision.

  • Sydney Haas

    To engage in the political process most effectively and make decisions as unbiasedly as possible, we must analyze the same information from many, many sources. No matter what happens in politics, most everything is repeated by most every news source out there, because that is what they are designed for in general. You need many sources to determine what actually happens in the world. Secondly, we must make sure we know exactly where we stand on every matter out there. By analyzing our beliefs, we know exactly how we stand on issues which leads us to be able to be completely certain of what we want in a candidate. It is important to be confident in what we believe so that we do not shift with the changing winds and influences of biased news sources and opinions.

  • Teena Varghese

    One effective way of understanding the current situations and being firm in your beliefs is diving in and really learning about what’s going on around you. Another great way is to have conversations. Having conversations brings another perspective and allows you to see where others are coming from instead of being one-sided. I think it’s great to create an atmosphere where you can teach not only yourself but others and not feel like you or others are being judged. I definitely think researching and having conversations is a great way to engage in the political process.

  • Kaitlyn Hickey

    The most important thing for the voter is to make sure that all of the information that they are basing their vote on is correct. There are reliable websites that have up-to-date factual information to educate the general public about a specific policy or candidate. Bias, however, tends to be harder to work around. The best thing is to try to find reliable information from the most unbiased source available, which might take some extra effort from the voter. The voter choosing their opinion and creating their own thoughts about an issue or candidate is vital, and it is important for them to not just vote the way their friends, parents, or colleagues do.

  • Jordan Medaris

    Being an informed voter is gravely important! In my opinion it is necessary to do research and look at multiple accurate sources in order to know exactly what and for whom you are voting. So many times people take the biased media at face value and refuse to dig any deeper and find out the truth. In this election in particular I feel it is important to know what each party believes and stands for and its platform. You have to know firmly what you believe and align yourself with a party that reflects that, because when voting you have to know what the party stands for who in leadership is going to accurately represent those beliefs and you as a citizen. I would encourage others to be engaged in voting this election by not just showing up and doing it, but by showing up with the knowledge and information to back up what you mark on your ballot.

  • Zach Atkinson

    It can be really difficult to learn about the candidates when you are hearing all of these things that you know may not be true. I honestly think that one of the best ways to find out information on candidates is watch listen to their speeches and what they have to say in debates. This is so you can directly hear things coming from the candidates. You can then hear where they stand on issues and you can also learn about their leadership abilities and prior experiences. It is very important for everyone to be informed about these things when they go to vote.

  • First of all, a voter shouldn’t engage in most news from social media forums like Facebook and Twitter. Nothing posted on those sites are fact checked, or credible. A voter who wants to know the truth needs to search for the most unbiased media outlets that share both sides of debates. Doing your own research is the best way you can inform yourself as a voter. We should understand that our vote towards the presidential candidates only counted in the primary, when choosing a nominee. The electoral college surpasses the popular vote in the main election. But, and informed voter should also know that the state questions are very important and something we have a say in! It is your civic duty and right as an American to have your voice heard!

  • Kameron Nelson

    In a world as increasingly biased as ours and with more ways then ever for people to broadcast their opinions, it can be extremely difficult for an individual, particularly younger ones, to come to their own decision. The best way to combat this is to use multiple sources from both sides as well as many close to factual sources as possible. While social media is generally the most easily accessible source, it should only be used to get a broad understanding of the topics/candidates. Other sources should then be applied as well as talk to multiple people with differing perspectives. This is will make it easiest on an individual to make an educated decision.

  • Hope Hohnke

    After speaking to many people about voting, I’ve heard quite a bit of people saying they were not voting because they don’t like the candidates. I’ve been able to talk some people into voting due to the state questions and the effect they have. Being a political science major, this class was very intriguing to me and was very helpful in expanding my thought on the questions. I feel much more confident in the information I’ve been sharing, but it also has helped alter my views on some of the questions. Voting is much more than the next candidate to live in the white house for the next four years. I feel that many people are voting strictly on party to get their party appointed in the supreme court. It is a logical theory, but even for those who aren’t bothered by that, I think it is very relevant for a person to go vote due to the questions. It is the most effective way for a person to get their opinion presented locally, which will have the most affect on them. Personally, talking to people about voting just on their local ideas through the state questions has been the easiest way to convince them to vote.

  • Na'eemah Phanelson

    I feel the best way a voter can get reliable information is by going to whatever party’s official website and looking up the constitution of that party- which they change every 4 years. This will show what the part believes and why they stand by their beliefs and how they hope to accomplish them. Also, doing research about what websites/ channels (news, radio etc) are unbiased and reliable would be something great as well. Now finding out about more information when it comes to state questions would be by going to your states voter website and see what is being offered- then from there some research would definitely have to be done when coming to a conclusion about how to vote for the state questions. I think it would also be a good idea o ask questions from those informed individuals who you trust and who you feel could give you the best unbiased or informed information about the state questions. Good Luck!

  • Jasmine Stevenson

    My best advice to the voters in this year’s election would be to spend time seeking out true and accurate information. Understand that not everything you read on Twitter/Facebook is accurate. Find a news source that is reliable, truthful and unbiased. Do your own research on the policies the candidates are advocating for and then decide which align most with your own beliefs. Don’t let the media form an opinion for you, instead inform yourself and learn to research things that you need to know in order to form that opinion. A lot of us now seem to allow our parents, teachers and peers to sway our beliefs and ideas, however I encourage you to think on your own and learn to ask the right questions to the right people.

  • Connor Schuff

    Elections from President of the United States to President of your senior class in high school are and have always been based on popularity and social acceptance. We see this more so now in current elections. In reality when electing someone we need someone to get the job done correctly instead of just being funny or well known, we need to know the background and views of every candidate. I persuade you to research and discover new facts about each candidate so you can form a valuable opinion.

  • Danny Eagle

    Finding legitimate information over candidate’s policies, viewpoints and morals has been a challenge this election season. Not to say I have any perspective to give over other election seasons, (I turned 18 approximately three months prior to election day) but the processes I’ve had to go through to reach my viewpoints and feel they are based on valid sources have been very difficult. I have found it difficult to get my hands on any truthful viewpoints and statements that have not come directly from interviews and speeches. I believe the media is this way because this election has turned into a biased war of people trying to take away all gray areas from the decision process. Voters this year will have you believing that if you support Trump you’re instantly a racist idiot, or if you support Hillary you’re instantly an evil crook, but it’s not surprising this election is so left or right considering who the candidates are. This hate that is being fueled into politics has birthed so many accusatory articles, biased reportings, and hate filled voters. All of these make the decision of an undecided voter very difficult because it is hard to trust indirect sources. The only advice I can give to voters on how to find valid candidate info is to watch, read, and listen to a multitude of sources. Having different perspectives and viewpoints can help you to see a candidate for who they truly are. But the best way to get truth and info over what a candidate believes and holds true is to listen to their past interviews and speeches along with their new interviews and speeches. This a direct source of what they claim to be their personality. And despite this being a direct source we have to take into account that what they are saying is a lie. This is where reading and watching a multitude of other sources comes in to help form your opinion.
    In conclusion, candidates can be hard to pin on who they truly are, and the only way to get a true evaluation of them is absorb information from a multitude of indirect sources and direct sources from both the past and present.

  • Dylan Stottmann

    In order for a voter to find out what information is true or not, they can do research on each candidates platforms and find out the truth. A voter can follow the debates and campaigns on the news and social media, but in order to ensure they know what they are voting for, they should do outside research on their own to fully understand what the candidates stances are on each political issue. Overall the biggest part of being an effective voter is to know exactly what your personal stances and beliefs are on the political issues, and thoroughly research each candidates platforms and background information. This will ensure that you are voting for the things that you believe in. This will allow you to vote for someone who wholly represents you as an american citizen so if they take office, you will be sure to have someone who has the same goals in mind as you.

  • Melissa Salazar Velasco

    The internet is a blessing and a curse. It is a blessing because we have easier access to different information. However, it is a curse because so many people have the power to provide the information, which can be extremely biased. The media holds a significant role in influencing how we formulate opinions on various issues. This concept has been relevant in this election. I think that the most important thing that an individual should do before adopting a stance on an issue or a candidate is checking the credibility of the source offering the information. I also believe that we should not rely solely on one source. As leaders, it is our responsibility to be aware of the truth behind our political candidates and policies, and to spread the truth to those that may not be aware.

  • Bella Oliver

    One way that I always check my information is by using a fact checking website. There are multiple databases that will take a website and tell you the accuracy of each of the statements on the website you’re checking. This way I know whether or not the information i am reading is factual or not. You can also google which news sources are more biased than others and which direction they are biased to. I once found a picture of a spectrum that showed all the major news sources and their biases. As for information on each candidate, back in Washington voters receive a voter’s guide that provides information on each candidate and what their beliefs are, and I find this to be the least biased information about all types of candidates from governors to presidents. I also know there are government websites that provide this information as well.

  • Chase McMillen

    I believe that in order to pick a decent candidate especially in this election, we really have to dig pretty deep in order to get to any substance that is worth hearing. If we listen closely every once in a while we can hear some sort of policy that each candidate has a viewpoint on. Even though both sides have changed their minds several times on a few issues we can find out what each candidates opinion is on a few topics. I think the best thing to do in this election is to look past both candidates pasts due to major flaws in each and look at the overall achievements of each individual. I personally think a capitalistic mindset would serve our nation well, due to the inefficiencies our government possesses. I believe someone with a capitalistic mindset will be able to streamline a lot of processes that don’t work well or efficiently.

  • Shania Slavick

    Since there is so much debate about information given about the 2 presidential candidates, one should do their own research towards what their views are to see how they line up with the 2 candidates. Basically, stop watching the news and weigh the pros and cons out to oneself to really find out the truth. For example, checking with a local reputable site that ends in .org or .gov can be really reliable for this situation. They can really find out which candidate that they would rather vote for and endorse them through going to political rallies. Many Americans don’t vote because they don’t believe that their single vote could actually make a difference but that is not true. It is an individual’s civic duty to vote and engage in politics.

  • Savannah Todd

    The best way to ensure you are making the best decision for you is to just simply research. Research everything about each candidate. Make sure that you are using credible sources rather than just listening to what social media has to say. As a voter, you want to make sure that you are knowledgeable about the candidates and their beliefs to ensure you are making the right choice. Also, you should be sure and watch the presidential debates. This helps to really see exactly what the presidential candidates are thinking and what they are planning to achieve if they are in office. All in all, if you just educate yourself you will make the right decision for you.

  • Savannah Todd

    The best way to ensure you are making the best decision for you is to just simply research. Research everything about each candidate. Make sure that you are using credible sources rather than just listening to what social media has to say. As a voter, you want to make sure that you are knowledgeable about the candidates and their beliefs to ensure you are making the right choice. Also, you should be sure and watch the presidential debates. This helps to really see exactly what the presidential candidates are thinking and what they are planning to achieve if they are in office. All in all, if you just educate yourself you will make the right decision for you.

  • Avery Ann Ibison

    My advice is very simple. Develop your own opinions and then allow others to challenge your views. Do no conduct your thoughts off of what your parents may influence upon you. Also, do not follow the general crowd of opinions unless it is synonymous with your own. Many people develop political ideas off what they read on social media or what the news is spewing out. Those will be the two most flawed sources to follow. To research more look onto credible websites and form your own opinions that match your personal morals.

  • Kiel Kondrick

    It was very interesting to be able to see all the options of things to vote for on top of just deciding which political candidate i prefer. In my experience I have found that it is easiest to develop my opinion by reading resourceful articles and listening to podcasts. I tend to avoid very controversial television broadcasts or trending social media movements. Another source I find credible is information passed down from a few professors. I also listen to the opinions of my parents and then further educate myself on what they discussed so I can develop my own decision.

  • Austin Elliott

    I think we can engage in many different ways when it comes to choosing a candidate. Finding the correct information about the candidates can be tricky but i think personal research is the best bet. Learning things from credible internet sources is the main thing i think this campaign has had problems with. Another easy way to not take in the wrong information is too listen to what the opponent has to say about them. The last thing i think will help people get a accurate guess is watching how they respond to questions and the belief system they have.

  • Myah Murphy

    A large reason of why I am pushing people to vote is that this election is not solely based on the Presidential election, but local elections as well. The amount of time spent in talking about the state questions over who is president proves this. I have chosen who I am voting for based off a website called isidewith.com. They ask a series of questions that have descriptions with them so that we know what they are truly asking. I like this, and refer it to others. because it almost too simple and only takes a half hour of your time.

  • dayseah boston

    A voter can engage intelligently in choosing a presidential candidate during a time when a significant amount of information is biased or factually incorrect. We have to look beyond their characteristics and flaws. We need someone in office that will protect and make the right choices as president. No one knows for sure of what each candidate is capable of but we can get a good idea based off of the fruits they produce. The media is met to entertain so everything that is said is we need to take as a grain of salt. We should look into it so we can try and get an understanding of what is really going on.

  • Charmaine Robinson

    In order to make sure your getting factual information as a candidate we have to search matter out. We must do the research. It’s our responsibility to read, look at the news to ensure what candidates say match up with their policies. As an educated person we have take ownership. We must be able to back up our votes with real data not just be moved by emotion.

  • Julie DeMauro

    I believe regardless of what election or who is running that each voter should step away from the main stream of things and actually look at each candidate without any bias. I personally know a lot of people who simply said they hated one party because the people around them said the same thing. While it can be hard to filter through media to find facts, I think something as important as electing our next leader is worth the time. Each voter should know what each candidates stands for, what their plans are along with any negative qualities. However, most people get hung up on finding the bad things about each candidate rather than finding the one who will be most effective in better our country for the next four years.