Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Reddit Tell A Friend Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites
OpEdNews Op Eds

Throwing Shade, Not Light, on Youth Voting

By       Message Laura Flanders       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   2 comments

Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; , Add Tags
Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H2 6/5/18

Author 47864

From Counterpunch

From youtube.com: How to get young people to vote {MID-296239}
How to get young people to vote
(Image by YouTube, Channel: TEDx Talks)
  Permission   Details   DMCA
- Advertisement -

It's the summer before midterm elections, and the political forecast is already promising heavy showers of skepticism about young voters.

The seasonal downpour is especially important this year because, for the first time, 18-35-year-old "millennials" -- and their even younger counterparts, "generation z" -- will be America's single largest voting block with power to swing the result if they actually turn out to cast a ballot. The perennial question is, will they?

I hosted a discussion this week for Free Speech TV that gave me every reason to think the answer might be yes. Energy and enthusiasm are up; whether it's guns or debts or jobs or just that racist, sexist Trump, there's certainly no shortage of motivation.

- Advertisement -

28-year-old Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, an organizer for Bernie in the Bronx, said, "People like me aren't supposed to run for Congress"; but she's just the sort who gets people excited. She's mounting a 100% volunteer, no corporate money drive to trigger the first primary in her district in 14 years, and if her guts and gusto translate into signatures, she'll do it.

Young people are running, and voters seem engaged. 56% of millennials polled by CNN this month said they were likely to cast a ballot. In California, 100,000 16-17-year-olds have already preregistered.

Still, as the skeptics never tire of saying, only about half of all eligible young voters actually voted in 2016, and young people traditionally lag even further behind their elders in non-presidential elections. Two months after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, youth registration was actually down in the Tallahassee epicenter of the protests.

- Advertisement -

Personally, I'm always impressed not by how few, but by how many young people manage to cast a ballot given how vigorously others try to stop them. As Parkland School shooting survivor David Hogg tweeted recently, if the selective service can register 18-year-olds automatically for war, there's no real reason the state boards of elections couldn't do likewise for democracy.

Instead, as the young tend to favor Democrats, GOP lawmakers are doing everything they can to stop them voting at all, such as curbing opportunities for registration and early voting, reducing polling places, and requiring photo IDs with a current address. Exposing voter suppression should be priority number one for journalists, but it's so much easier to throw shade than light.

 

- Advertisement -

Must Read 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Laura Flanders is the host of "GRIT TV" the new, news and culture discussion program aired daily on Free Speech TV (Dish Network ch. 9415) and online at the popular blog site Firedoglake.com. Flanders also hosts RadioNation, on Air America (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon Share Author on Social Media   Go To Commenting

The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Jeff Sessions Sets Back the Clock

Welcome to Commonomics: How to Build Local Economies Strong Enough for Everyone

The Strange Sticking Power of Rick Santorum

Drone Strikes? What's To Feel Bad About?

Bill de Blasio: A Mayor for the New Economy

Healthcare Isn't Big Business Or Big Philanthropy! -- Ben Palmquist and Dr. Steffie Woolhandler