Andrew’s Approach: Teen voting is more important now than ever before

It doesn’t sound too exciting at first. Waiting in line for a couple of hours to decide which of the old white men will be the next Republican nominee for President. And come November, the lines will be even worse, as people will wait yet again to decide who exactly will choose who the next war will be against or how to spend tax dollars. All in all, it doesn’t sound like a great experience.

And perhaps because these common stereotypes of voting exist is part of the reason why young people don’t really care to vote, especially for president.

The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement reports that the percentage of people voting between the ages of 18 and 29 is stagnated at about 52 percent.

Voter turnout for those at about 18 years old (581 of our seniors) is extremely low.

Whether factors contributing to this include lack of knowledge, carelessness or ignorance (and probably a combination of the three), it is important, now more than ever, for young people to vote.

The national debt is now more than $15 trillion and climbing by the second. The most ironic thing to me is how many young people, especially here at MHS, have jobs and pay taxes yet don’t even consider voting on how those dollars are spent.

We, as the future work force, are going to be paying this debt off (if it is humanly possible). We will be the ones who will have to deal with the repercussions of reckless spending at the federal, state and local level. We may even be the first to not get our Social Security checks in the mail on time, solely because there is no money to send.

I will not go into the politics of whether deficit spending is good or bad, but I will acknowledge the fact that the debt is obviously very large. There are many problems being talked about now (such as Social Security) that can be debated for ever and ever by our currently elected officials, but they can never care as much because they will be dead by the time it is a real problem. We are the only ones who should care. We are the only ones who need to care.

Voting by America’s young people is more important now more than ever. Never before has a younger generation been tied down to such an enormous debt that cannot and (hopefully) will not keep climbing. For that reason, and many others, I strongly encourage anyone 18 and older by November to vote on our highest elected officials.