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Filed under Opinion

Teens Deserve a Political Voice! Give them a Vote!

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Many teens at Taft have a job, a car or both. They pay taxes and follow state laws while driving. Despite having the ability to do this, they do not have the right to vote where their taxes should go, or whether a driving law is ethical or not. In our current political climate, many issues concerning young Americans are on the rise. Teens need political representation, and that is not happening. One of the most controversial topics is gun control. Ever since the Parkland shooting, many students expressed concern that only the adults have the ability to make a political change. When teen lives are at stake, shouldn’t teens have a voice?

 

Adults usually argue that 16-year-olds shouldn’t be able to vote. They state that high school age young adults can be too immature or that they do not understand politics; however, these critics are wrong. In high school, we take US History and Government classes. The whole purpose is to create and prepare us to be a well-rounded person. In the last election, the youngest group of 18-25-year-olds had the lowest turnout. An embarrassing reality because these adults should be making change by voting for their future. If the voting policy changed to include teenaged young adults, there would not be so many problems concerning us, because we can have our voices heard, and our vote would matter. The 18-25 demographic is the largest, and if teens 16+ were included they could help ensure that the young voters had better turnouts at each election.

 

Walking the halls at Taft on the day of Midterm elections many students expressed their frustration of not being able to vote. Along with frustration and annoyance of advertisements and commercials for people running for office. Yes, some kids do not care about voting, and that’s okay. I am not saying ALL the teens are going to vote. However, the ones that do are going to make a change.

In Takoma Park, they allow 16-year-olds to vote in local elections. They are the first city to grant 16-year-olds the right to vote. In an interesting observation, the town noticed a trend with the young voters, the act of minors voting meant that their parents were more likely to vote as well, increasing the voter turnout across the board. With everything going on in our country, we are having a problem with political apathy, especially from our youngest group of voters. By lowering the voting age, the participation of the younger groups will increase, and the 16-25 demographic will grow to be the largest voting demographic that can make the most change. We must turn out the vote and show Politicians that our issues matter, and we can only do that by voting.

 

We need a voice. We have to be heard. We can not just rely on the politicians to change our world for us. Allowing the right to vote at 16 can help us create a better future for teens across the nation. Older generations have already voted for their future; it is our turn.

 

For now, if you will be 18 by the next presidential election, teens can preregister to vote and will be included in the primary election even if they are not yet 18. So long as you will be of voting age by the 2020 election, you can make your vote count.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Do you think the voting age should be lowered to 16?

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About the Writer
Kelly Cervantes, Section Editor

 

Hi! My name is Kelly Cervantes. I am 17 years old and I am senior at Taft. Some information

about me is that I am very tiny (5ft). I am Mexican...

1 Comment

One Response to “Teens Deserve a Political Voice! Give them a Vote!”

  1. Nicolas Tsangaris on November 27th, 2018 10:39 am

    I agree with this idea because I think it would increase patriotism in teenagers and we will feel like an important part of our country as well. This could be very good also because parents would be inspired by their kids and vote and we would have many more people voting. Also, this is going to be our world and we should be able to vote for what we believe in so that by the time we are young adults, our world would be that much better.

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Teens Deserve a Political Voice! Give them a Vote!