REVISING & EDITING Read the selection and choose the best answer to each question. Then fill in the answer on your answer document. Damian is excited about being eligible to vote in the next presidential election, but he’s also disappointed that many Americans do not participate in the voting process. He has written this paper to persuade people to vote. Read Damian’s paper and think about the revisions he needs to make. Then answer the questions that follow.
(1) According to the United Nations, the right to vote is a fundamental human right. (2) It’s the most direct way for people to influence the decisions of their government. (3) This right is not guaranteed in all nations of the world, but it is part of the U.S. Constitution. (4) Surprisingly, however, many Americans fail to exercise this right. (5) In fact, in 2008 only 64 percent of eligible Americans voted in the presidential election. (6) And in local elections the percentages were even smaller. (7) This isn’t a wise move for you or the country.
(8) Before the American Revolution the British government taxed the colonists living in what is now the United States. (9) These colonists had no say in the decisions about taxes made by the government in Great Britain. (10) This idea of taxation without representation is part of the reason our forefathers were determined. (11) They wanted to separate from Great Britain and form their own nation. (12) Thousands of Americans fought and died in the revolution that followed, which eventually led to independence and voting rights for many. (13) Even today this right is very limited in some countries around the world. (14) Therefore, in Saudi Arabia the government operates under an absolute monarchy, and people have no opportunity to vote in national elections. (15) And in communist North Korea, citizens are allowed to vote, but there is only one name on the ballot. (16) Voting rights activists say that absurdities like these have been alleged in other countries as well, including Egypt and Iran. (17) As Americans, we should appreciate the fact that we live in a democracy where we are free to voice our opinions. (18) The best way to demonstrate gratitude for this right is by showing up at the polls.
(19) Government decisions affect your life every day. (20) How can you complain about issues concerning school funding, the environment, and health care if you don’t even take the time to vote on proposals involving those issues? (21) It’s astounding to me that one of the lowest voter turnout rates in the United States is what Texas has. (22) In fact, in a recent presidential election, only about 55 percent of eligible Texans cast a vote. (23) And in local elections sometimes less than 10 percent of the voting population chooses who will make them.
(24) At one time only white male citizens could vote in the United States, but today most citizens who are 18 or older are eligible to vote. (25) And registering to vote is a simple process. (26) You just need to complete a voter registration application and mail it to the voter registrar in your county. (27) So when you turn 18, take the time to become a registered voter. (28) Then pay attention to election candidates and issues.