I just want to introduce a young lady (Her name removed at the authors request) that walked into a discussion I was involved in on Twitter yesterday. Throughout the week people have been calling for young people to get out and register to vote. The call came from more moderate sections of the community on Social media, and that includes us at The Dangerous Globe. For some reason the notoriously extremely right wing press and TV in the UK were strangely silent about getting young people to vote, its almost as if they were scared of something 😉
As an old git, but one with a couple of teenagers in the family myself, I felt the need to try and elicit the opinion of this young lady, to both educate myself, on the thoughts of an 18-year-old girl forced to watch this generation of politicians making complete A-Holes of themselves, and to help educate anyone else who may care to have an open mind on the subject.
This is what she came up with.
The Recent GE Debate: Young voters and ‘what to do with them’.
“Young Voters” seems to be the topic of discussion for most people across the UK with the General Election approaching.
However, opinions on this apparent ‘issue’ seem to be split. Some feel that young voters are inexperienced, immature and unable to decide on such an important topic as politics, when only 18. Ironic? At 18 in the UK you can join the armed forces and get married; to me they seem like pretty important life choices. The other side of the coin is that it enhances a young persons interest in politics, making them want to become more engaged and understand which political party they truly align with.
Of course – things aren’t always black and white. So yes, there’s also a third option. Lowering the voting age to 16. It’s not as insane as it sounds, especially when you consider that when you’re 16 you can already get married if you have consent. One argument is that voting this young is ridiculous because 16 year olds have no way of being informed enough of key issues (education, health care, the economy…) but there’s a very simple way of solving this: The introduction of political education into schools, just like geography or history. Through this remedy, younger voters will become engaged and informed simply by their education, there can be no more excuses. What makes anyone think that when someone leaves school and becomes an adult that they’re suddenly become interested in politics? Education could easily solve the issue. Having studied politics at a-level myself and spoken to others who wish they had learnt previously, I do not see how this could go wrong. Generally, votes at 16 were seen as a positive in the Scottish Referendum with 100,000 young Scottish voters taking part: a surveyed 71% voting for independence and 29% against, showing clear understanding.
One way that the young voters who can already vote can become involved is by the adult’s that surround them encouraging them and being supportive.
Here are some of the differences between current leaders that I have identified and that young people may or may not be aware of:
1) Corbyn doesn’t support Trident, which makes him insane because he doesn’t like killing people. Theresa May voted in favour of the air strike on Syria by Cameron in 2015.
2) May voted against equalising the age of consent in 1998 and then against allowing homosexual couples to adopt children in 2001, and again in 2002. Whilst Corbyn campaigned against Section 28.
3) Corbyn voted for a bill in 2014 which meant companies with more than 250 employees must publish differences in pay of male and female staff – May didn’t even vote. (Tim Farron of the Lib Dems voted for, if you fancy yourself as a bit of a liberal… “we’re all sinners”).
Take this information as you will, biased possibly, or just plain shocking.
Following the pictures released of Theresa May & Donald Trump holding hands, it is hard to see why she feels he is the right leader for a nation that prospers in all of its diversities, when all the while he is a man that has spread nothing but hate based on gender and religious beliefs,
Back in the UK, who has been the ‘weak’ leader out in the streets, campaigning with the real people, whilst the one claiming a ‘strong and stable’ leadership hides away? If you can answer that question without me having to tell you, it should be easy for you to decide who to vote for on the 8th June.