Yesterday, I got to vote in the primary elections for the Governor of my state. It was only my second time voting, as my first experience was during the presidential elections right after I turned 18.
Though I’ve grown up in a very politically savy family, I confess that I haven’t been as engaged as I really should be. To me, and many others, the word “politics” usually has an ugly meaning attached to it that’s hypocritical, power-hungry and corrupt. While I used to want to brush off politics all together, I’ve realized how mistaken I was to turn my back on such a brewing, life-changing force. Yes, the political world IS full of slime… which is exactly why we need to get our heads out of the sand and understand what is being given and taken away from us right underneath our nose.
Unlike most other places in the world, you and I have the opportunity and FREEDOM to be a part of shaping how our country is run and how we are allowed to live our lives. This is a precious privilege that we cannot take lightly, or it will be taken away.
Young people, it is not acceptable for us to be disengaged or apathetic when it comes to what is going on politically in our country. Our lives and future, as well as the world around us, are being directly affected by the good or bad decisions being made by our leaders today. Every document that is signed, every law that is passed is currently laying the foundation for our future. Those who say they are “apathetic” towards politics are in essence saying they don’t care about who or what shapes their future! Wake up.
It’s not about a campaign. It’s about things like our personal freedom. Our religion. Our future families. Our ability to pursue our dreams. It’s about issues like abortion, war, national security, finances. While these words have a tendency to overwhelm and make some of us want to run, they are issues and realities that we need to open our eyes to.
Trust me, I’ll be the first person to tell you that I have a lot of learning to do. None of this stuff is something I would naturally read about on my spare time or listen for on the radio. However, I realize its importance, and WILL NOT be apathetic. I will care and learn as much as I can because I refuse to stand idly by while my freedom is tromped on and my future misshaped.
Though at times we may feel these things are irrelevant to us as young people… WE are the ones who will have to live long-term with the decisions that are currently being made. Not our parents. Not even the leaders.
Frankly, if anyone should care, it’s us.