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Rethinking Everything—Except Your Vote!

Updated: Apr 6, 2020

Today, instead of youth from across the city meeting on Penn’s campus to get youth vote trending, #VoteThatJawn officially begins—ta-dah!—the Pandemic Re-think Everything Campaign.


So what’s next?

Virtual Jawn!

Student contributors begin work this week to stock the new website Jawn like a trout stream with great content. They will be writing stories and curating multi-media to release starting April. Wanna contribute? Email us: Student writers, artists, organizers; teachers looking for virtual activities for their remote classes. Join us!

We are also working with partners to prepare virtual events. Connection in the service of youth vote. The aim this Spring: oh, hell yeah, we’re still going to get youth vote trending.

Just to remind us all what this platform will be holding in the light for 2020:

  • Following and sharing the work of so many great partners, among them, the great Philly Youth Vote for high school, all Philadelphia universities’ get-out-the-youth-vote groups, and the Philadelphia City Commissioners’ Office;

  • Finding new work for sharing, with young musicians and spoken-word artists, such as the amazing highschool kids at Hill-Freeman Academy and the brilliant 2018 Jawn house band from Franklin Learning Center;

  • Working with a small Jawn Steering Committee to enlist new partners for a citywide youth reading of March: Book Three by Congressman John Lewis; then, to celebrate emerging from our shelters, we’ll read it together, with multimedia input from special guests;

  • Combining that reading with a great September Jawn, ahead of National Registration Day for pent-up passionate youth who want, demand their vote—and pledge to drag all their friends to the polls. Hype meet Strategy!

  • A citywide reading-and-writing-and-music event using Walt Whitman’s poem “Election Day, November 1884” as lighter fluid. Youth read, write, create about our elections, their first, now—and share.

  • Meanwhile the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society has commissioned composer Kenji Bunch to write a piece inspired by that very poem. The Harlem and Catalyst Quartets have agreed to perform it, in October, which PCMS and the rest of us will figure out when we get there.

Our 2018 experience showed us how the numbers of registered youth could jump, in one election cycle, from about 2,600 to nearly 7,000. In 2020 we believed—we still believe—we can see 10,000 fresh young voters come to the polls—six feet apart, by mail, absentee. Whatever.

The point is, we’re re-thinking everything—except you, Philly youth. We believe in you, and we want you to come on and get. your. vote.

Temple U junior Katie Fish has designed Philadelphia’s new “I Voted” sticker. Source: The Temple News

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