Onalaska resident Anthony Norse says he doesn’t usually vote. But this year, he’s thinking about it more seriously.
"I’m starting to see the importance of people who are in office and maybe people who you can approach and talk to about certain things that are important to you, to make a change for the community," Norse said.
Norse said he used to be skeptical about the election process, wondering if the system was rigged.
"I used to — didn’t think it really made a difference because people talk about, 'Oh, well it doesn't matter. At the end of the day, a certain person’s going to make it,'" Norse said.
But he said his perspective changed when he tried to address a problem in his community.
Norse is a barber and he said clients often open up to him about their problems. Recently, he heard some concerning allegations about practices at a local police department. So he started reaching out to city officials to find out more information.
"Because of the loopholes and things that I’m seeing that you’ve got to go through just to get certain information or to have someone help you, I’m starting to realize that it's really important to know and to get involved with who is who, and who is actually making regulations and rules for the place where you live," Norse said.
He said many people in the community have given up on voting, but he thinks they should still cast their ballot.
"That’s like saying, ‘You know what, why should you believe in God? Because you don't really see.' But it'd be better off to believe in something instead of going to hell, you know what I’m saying? That's the best way I know how to explain it," Norse said.