“Make sure Ohio firefighters are ready. Vote no on Issue 2,” is just one of many tag lines from commercials, newspaper ads, and phone calls, signaling that Election Day is just around the corner. Candidates tend to focus on the adult votes, but teenagers can have a part in the action even without a vote.
With 18 as the voting age, only 29% percent of McNicholas seniors are able to vote, but even minors have strong opinions on issues. Fortunately, there are other ways interested students can be involved.
Politics is such a confusing and manipulating topic, so the first thing students need to do is get informed about the issues. This way they can form educated opinions and have an idea of what ideals they want to support. Students can look in newspapers or on the internet for information about the issues.
Since campaigning is a big way that votes are decided, students can get involved by contacting campaign headquarters and volunteering there. This is a great way for students to be part of the process and learn more about politics, especially if they are interested in it as a career. They can also do simpler things like make flyers and buttons and distribute signs.
As social studies teacher Pat Stricker said, another way for students to have a voice is “wearing” their opinion. Students can wear shirts or campaign buttons that show their support. If students are old enough, they can also make phone calls to homes.
Adults are the ones voting, but not all adults are informed about the issues until they get to the ballot. So students can also promote their cause by talking to all the adults around them and getting them informed.
Voting is an eventual privilege of every citizen of the United States, but with that power comes the responsibility to get informed and involved. Just because some don’t have the power to vote doesn’t mean they can’t make a difference too.