Voter hopeful for a down to Earth landing

Ana Costanzo, Staff Writer

By Ana Costanzo

On July 20, 1969, the Apollo Lunar Module Eagle landed on the barren landscape of the moon. Traveling a distance of 238,900 miles, the marshmallow men asserted their presence with an American flag. This American flag on the rugged terrain of a cosmic sphere visible on a clear pitch night is a symbol for the country’s declaration of freedom, no longer tethered to this Earth’s orbit.  

Fifty-one years later, I would be asserting my own liberation—just a little bit more down to earth. 

My personal triumph does not involve a revolutionary act that would affect a Space War or gain notoriety for a conspiracy or even a universal “leap for mankind.” Rather, it is a celebration of an American citizen’s constitutional right to vote. 

On Super Tuesday 2020 for the Democratic Primary, GrtWht1 arrived at the nearest elementary school from my home. Traveling a distance of 1.6 miles, the mother and daughter duo asserted their presence with an “I voted Virginia Beach” sticker with the American emblem. 

I walked in, expecting the grandeur of a long processional, people neighborly screaming into my ear who to vote for, who not to vote for, thanks for coming, are you aware you are voting for the Democratic primary for the Democratic nomination? Yes? I.D., please. 

I’d voted with my parents before, my expectation of the daunting processional arising from such an event. But then I remember I was eight and to a little girl clinging to her daddy’s leg, anyone over four feet is intimidating.

There was no buzz of electricity. It was an empty gymnasium, with three blind democratic Oracles, graciously smiling at my nervousness and my mother’s incessant desire for a commemoration of this moment. Multiple flower-arranged voting booths were sprawled in the middle of the gym. I got my I.D. and voting list, took out my pen, situated myself at a cubbie, and circled away, scanning the over-populated Democratic candidate ballot. 

I had just committed my first burgeoning-adult act before I even became an adult. While the scene was not much of a spectacle, this was my Armstrong moment. 

However, there was no sudden metamorphosis into adulthood like in a James Joyce story. Rather, I walked out just the way I came: expectant for my future regarding my voice. A voice with which I am able to express my political sensibility. 

Voting is a duty of the American citizen, the compelling hope for a new tomorrow in which the person of their choice becomes just a little bit closer to recognize one’s own wants. 

It too is a duty I greatly look forward to in the near future.