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According to the 2010 US census, there are approximately 17 million Asian

Americans. However, only 47% voted in the 2012 presidential election. This is the lowest
turnout compared to the other ethnicities. Its not just the presidential election though; in
general the involvement of Asian American to civic engagement is very low.
Why is this? This is because many Asian American do not understand the
importance of civic engagement and democracy. I grew up in a typical Chinese American
family. My dad is a computer engineer and my mom is a scientist. They both are
intelligent and hardworking people, however they dont involve in politics at all and most
time they dont vote. My dad thought his one vote couldnt make any impact, so he
would rather not spend time to vote. My mom was too busy with job and families to vote.
I believe my mom and dad represents the situation for most Asian Americans. Many of
them dont like to get involved in politics, others think that they are too busy to get
involved and do not vote in elections because they think their votes dont matter.
But voting is very important, especially for the Asian Americans. By voting for
someone we believe in, we can help create the government that we want, that most
benefits us and our society. During the Civil Rights Movement, it was the African
Americans like Martin Luther King Junior who took a stand for the rights of colored
people, not just African Americans. Through the nonviolence movement, they had to
suffer beatings, lynches, prison, and even death at the hands of narrow-minded white
people. It paid off in the end, the government now cannot prohibit any person from
voting.
But this isnt the goal here. Just because we were secured the rights to vote
doesnt mean that we can be complacent. If none of us vote or get involved in civic
engagement, our voice, our interest will not be heard. We will not have representatives in
legislation and somebody else will make decision that may impact our lives or even the
lives of our future generations. One of the example is Senate Constitution Amendment
No. 5 or SCA 5. On January, 2014, California Senate approved SCA 5 which would allow
the State of California to deny students to public education on the basis of race, sex,
color, ethnicity, or national origin. If this got approved, many promising Asian American
students would lose their tosspots in UC to other minority groups like Hispanics or
Caucasians just because they were Asian.. Fortunately this had stirred up a strong
reaction in Asian American community. More than 100,000 people signed petition for
vote NO on SCA-5. As a result, SCA-5 was withdrawn on 2014. This just further
proved how much of a difference we can make if we get involved.
I believe now it is the time for all Asian American, particularly young people to
get involved in civic engagement. Traditional Asian students focused more on academic
excellence, now we need also to actively involved in public and community service so
that we can be prepared to become the future leaders of America. As a High School

student, I was actively involved in anti-GMO advocate. I found a GMO awareness club
with a group of students in Diamond Bar high school to spread the importance of GMO
labeling. Through this process I leant that it is important to get involved and make our
voice to be heard. I would like to devote myself in public service, especially to help rise
up voice for Asian American Society. Thats why this learning opportunity is so precious
to me. I would like to learn and gain leadership skills to serve our government for all
people, especially Asian American society.