Politics is a vital part of our world, it is the way countries are making decisions and the ways governments make rules and laws. Having this understanding can help you determine the best course of action for yourself and your family, regarding a wide range of issues. As government and politics impact nearly every aspect of our lives, it is unfortunate that this topic is being neglected in the academic world of young people.
To have a healthy democracy a politically engaged citizenry is vital. This increases the chances of the ordinary voices to be heard in important debates, highlighting legitimacy in democratic institutions. Although, for most nations around the world, most of the population is unengaged in politics.
Older, more educated, and ideological people tend to report having engaged in more forms of political activism in their country than younger, less educated, and less ideological adults. Explanations have been put forward to address why young people lack involvement. Some of these ideas propose that they are relatively apathetic, experiencing feelings of isolation in the subject or that they fail to see the relevance of a political agenda.
According to Pew Research Center 14 nations around the world polled, a median of 78% says they have voted at least once in the past. Another 9% say they might vote in the future, while 7% say they would never vote. Most of the people that vote usually aren’t really informed about their vote and are usually influenced by friends and family rather than being properly informed and this can turn into the selection of a government unable to perform
Seeing that young people are lacking education and in many cases the motivation or interest in becoming familiar with politics, something must be done to change that. Creating interest within young people to start educating themselves on politics is key, however, also offering the opportunity and support is a vital aspect in making this vision come to life.
The idea of having compulsory political education has become more popular, as it offers many benefits for the youth as well as the rest of the community. Offering base knowledge of politics gives students the advantage of being familiar with the political systems and governments, promoting an increase in young and educated voters, and avoiding the very common issue when it comes to young voters: electing candidates solely based on personality or public opinion.
If more people were aware of political matters, it would be likely that more citizens would participate in voting, which would offer a fairer representation of what everyone wants to see in the government. Additionally, the exposure to politics from an early age further increases the interest in this topic, which can offer a brighter and more developed future through more educated and responsible voters.
Allowing and encouraging participation in politics is a major aspect of getting more young people interested in these matters. As young people are generally excluded or overlooked in politics, it is important to let them know that their voice matters, to further motivate them, and create a safe environment for them to actively participate and take interest in politics. Keeping young students up to date with current political issues and situations is a great way to let them become part of the civic process. Knowing what is happening in the world and the community will offer a great advantage down the road for every single young person, gaining new skills and perspectives to ensure the formation of a well-educated voter.
For society to become more successful, younger generations must have the correct tools and understanding of politics introduced at a young age, or the sake of an increase in the number of people interested in politics. This change will promote a more educated choice of government bodies and will ensure that the public is heard, leading to a fairer and more developed environment.
Why do you think that people nowadays are less informed about politics? Comment your opinion down below.
3 Reasons You Should Care About Politics and Government. (2020, September 09). Retrieved October 21, 2020, from https://www.grantham.edu/blog/3-reasons-you-should-care-about-politics-and-government
Furlong, A., & Cartmel, F. (2011). Social Change and Political Engagement Among Young People: Generation and the 2009/2010 British Election Survey. Parliamentary Affairs, 65(1), 13-28. doi:10.1093/pa/gsr045
Garner, R. (2011, October 23). Political education classes ‘should be compulsory’. Retrieved October 21, 2020, from https://www.independent.co.uk/news/education/education-news/political-education-classes-should-be-compulsory-2273752.html
Make Politics a Compulsory Part of Education. (n.d.). Retrieved October 21, 2020, from https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/make-politics-compulsory-at-gcse
Says:, F., Says:, A., 11th grade Propel Braddock Hills students says:, Says:, A., Says:, D., Says:, S., . . . Says:, M. (2020, April 03). Youth and Politics. Retrieved October 21, 2020, from https://freechild.org/youth-and-politics/
Youth Political Participation. (2019, February 27). Retrieved October 21, 2020, from https://www.iknowpolitics.org/en/discuss/e-discussions/youth-political-participationU.S., Inspire. “7 Ways for Teens to Get Involved in Politics.” Bridge Alliance, www.bridgealliance.us/7_ways_for_teens_to_get_involved_in_politics.