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"Rock the Vote" Rocking the Teen Community
By: Donnie Delarose

MTV's own ""Rock the Vote"" had a pre kickoff in Times Square to their annual fund-raiser as they try to raise $5,000 dollars. The $5,000 will help them sell tickets in order to fill the seats of the Roseland Theater where MTV Networks will be hosting the 10th annual "Rock the Vote" benefit party/Patrick Lippert Awards.

"Rock the Vote" is a non-profit organization, which seeks to get younger people from ages 16 to 25 to become active. They discuss with their participants about politics, education, violence, health, environment, discrimination, economy, and free expression.

"Rock the Vote" was founded in the early 90's by members of the recording industry in response to a wave of political attacks on freedom of expression. The first members involved consisted of Madonna, Iggy Pop, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Woody Harrelson. Now entertainers ranging from AeroSmith to Steve Young participate with the organization. They are currently leading a street team, which is very active with 35 separate teams in major cities all across the U.S. These street teams conduct peer-to-peer organizing and voter education activities. The street teams go to many different events with ambition to recruit more members and also deliver knowledge to our youth. Their goal is to "hopefully tip the scales in a progressive direction," which is what Andy Gabor, the NY Street Team leader said.

The scales are tipping in a progressive direction. In 2002 alone RTV registered more than 200,000 new voters in the election cycle, in coordination with their partners. The "Rock the Vote" Benefit Party will be taking place on Saturday, February 22, 2003, the night before the Grammy Awards.


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