Win or lose, young Democrats in NJ won’t let election get them down
TRENTON — Snowflakes? Please. These New Jersey students say they won't melt after Election Night, no matter how it turns out.
Brown University and Vassar College student Democratic organizations were so concerned about watching midterm election coverage in the same venue that they had watched the 2016 presidential election results that they moved their respective events to a different venue, according to Politico.
That won't be necessary in New Jersey. College Democrats here have been working to get out the vote and are confident this time that the results will be more to their liking.
"I don't think there are really any groups on campus who take the results so hard," said Garrett Racz, president of The College of New Jersey College Democrats, adding that TCNJ has facilities to help those who may have emotional issues with the results. "We're just focused on getting the vote out and whatever happens happens. We got through 2016 and we'll get through 2018."
At the school, the campus Democrats and Republicans cross the aisle and meet together regularly.
"We break down barriers with opposing viewpoints and work together," said Racz, a junior political science major.
Michael Zhadanovsky, executive director of Rutgers University College Democrats, said members are taking active roles in campaigns in their home districts.
"In 2016 there was complacency on college campuses. A lot of people thought they could sit it out because they thought Hillary (Clinton) was going to get elected. There's been a drastic change this year."
The double-major in political science/information technology is confident members can handle defeat if their candidates don't win.
"I personally would be upset but not to the point where I wouldn't be able to go back to the room I was in. If you're a college student you should be able to handle yourself."
High school students were also deeply affected by the 2016 results and channeled their frustration into participating in political action. Elizabeth Meyer, of Branchburg, helped students organize the Women's March in Washington after Trump's inauguration and the March for Our Lives event in Newark.
"One of the kids I worked with, a high school senior, contacted me saying that he was nervous. I told him that I don't know what to expect either but I am hopeful," Meyer said. "But at the same time we have to be realistic and look back to November 2016 and remember what happened. Remember what the polls were saying and how it didn't exactly turn out the ways the polls predicted."
Regardless who wins Tuesday, Meyer said she told the student that their work is not over.
Meyer said the students are aware of young people being called "snowflakes" but encouraged them to be more than a label.
"We are not the labels people tell us we are. Our actions determine who we really are as people and individuals. We may not have the power to determine how things turn out on Tuesday but the power we do have is in how to react to those results," Meyer said.