Essay themes: No education or political role models, negativity associated with politics today
ANONYMOUS BY REQUEST
Why do we not vote? This so-called mind-boggling question has but one simple answer. We, the younger generation, are left in the dark on the concepts and strategies of politics. Although there are many ways to become more informed on this topic, many of us do not bother to make an effort to take advantage of the many sources offering the information on politics. I am nineteen years old, and the idea of voting has not even crossed my mind yet. One reason for my lack of participation is the lack of interest. I view politics as an irksome and complicated event in which I obviously have no intention of becoming involved. Yet, a bigger reason lies behind my failure to vote. I am uneducated on the concept of voting. I, along with many young adults who have just reached the voting age, am unprepared and unwilling to become a part of the electoral community. My proposition to solving this problem is to add a curriculum into our high school that will educate the developing minds on how to vote.
The ideal time to expose teens to political science is from their late junior to early senior year of high school. At this point, many of the students will be at the verge of reaching the legal voting age. The addition of an introductory political science section to the senior class schedule would help these young teens make their transitions to adulthood. This class should be focused on exposing the students to the world of politics: the proposals of each candidate, and if elected, whether or not that candidate is keeping the promise she/he made. The students need to see what is going on in our government. This way, if they see something that they disagree with, they will see an option to make a change: to vote. Current events should be included in the session. I have always succeeded in avoiding a huge part of the abundant mass media. As impossible as it may seem, I am still unaware of the candidates, which office they are running for, which issues they are for/against, and why they feel that way. These are the very things that I ought to be familiar with if I intend to vote. Yet, because I am ignorant about them, I decide not to vote. If these issues were discussed in a classroom, I would gain the knowledge required to make a wise voting decision.
Publicly, politics is given a negative image. Politicians such as our current president are constantly being portrayed negatively. Any person ignorant of all the positive things our president has done for the economy would automatically label President Clinton as a bad president. Thus, many of us assume that politics are bad and something we would be better off not being involved in. If the schools would bring to light politics in an objective point of view, then the students would realize that there is more to politics than what is being said in the late night talk shows. Seeing the positive things could get us motivated into getting a candidate re-elected. Vice-versa, seeing a more promising candidate may motivate us into submitting our opinion that a change needs to be made.
Just a few centuries ago, the voting populations were very limited. Thus, to be able to vote was a privilege. Now that the requirement to vote is reduced to the age minimum of eighteen, the privilege no longer seems to hold the level of honor it used to. I have always held the attitude that Election Day was left for the older people. People who, unlike me, were already settled down with their careers and could afford to pay attention to things other than the ambiguous future that lied ahead of me. I am nineteen years old, and I am still unfamiliar with the voting process. Public education teaches everything from sex education to Calculus. Why not add a short session on voting?
We all know that we should vote. But the truth is too many young citizens don't. As for myself, I do understand the importance of voting and that it is my one chance to tell the government what I want. There are so many reasons that generation X'ers do not vote. Many people think politics is already so corrupt and so what could possibly change that much.
I believe that there needs to be an even greater attempt by current government to send the message out constantly reminding people how or if we vote has an impact on the future of our earth and on our world. There could be more commercials on television and all types of media reminding citizens to register. I feel though that the people who want to vote will, and the ones who choose not to won't no matter how much easier or convenient it gets to register.
I firmly believe that the fact that so many young people don't vote is a symptom of a lethargic society. Yes, Americans are lazy in some respects. We don't feel like a nation at one anymore. We are all so into ourselves, everyone is glued to their computer, television, and video games because they make us feel safe. So many people are living life in the fast lane and aren't seeing the reality of the state of our nation or of the world.
I truly believe in my heart that most people would vote if they felt someone was worth being in office. But the sad truth is that when we watch the presidential debates all that they do is argue and try very hard to make each other look bad. It is so infantile that I find myself extremely uncertain with who I will vote for this election.
I can only hope that the voting situation in our country changes
for the better. The future of the world is in my, my future
children's, and all of our hands. People need to realize just
how important each vote is and that we can make a difference.