Research & Vote: Election participation vital for younger voters

Those between the ages 18 and 30 are the least likely to vote in the presidential election. Many of us don’t educate ourselves on political or economical matters. We don’t research. We don’t listen. We just don’t pay attention.

Many of us are in what seems to be a bubble, a bubble that is immune to all that is happening in the world. Our focus tends to stay centered on our jobs, sometimes school and our social lives.

We don’t stop to consider that something as crucial and important as the presidential election will have a tremendous effect on our generation.

What’s more is that we have the power to help change the course of any election if we will only practice the right we so freely take for granted.

The Pew Research Center reports young voters are significantly less engaged in this year’s election than at a comparable point in 2008. This age group now lags far behind older voters in interest in the campaign and intention to vote. The share of voters younger than 30 who are following campaign news very closely is roughly half what it was at this point four years ago (18 percent, down from 35 percent).

Kelly Gillit / THE FLARE

For voters under 30, Pew polls show 61 percent are highly engaged in the 2012 campaign, down from 75 percent four years ago.

Our generation seems to follow a herd mentality. It is so easy for us to vote in favor of a certain candidate because that is who our parents or friends are voting for. We urge you to establish your own convictions this year.

Research both candidates. Find which views fit your values. Form your own opinion from what you have learned, not based on what someone else says.

Frankly, at this point in our economy, our generation has the most to lose.

Our livelihoods are going to be dramatically changed by this election.

So get out, research and vote. It’s the least you can do.

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