So I am turning 26 years old next week. This may sound young to some, old to others, but to me it just seems weird. Life has been flying by since college and I know it will just continue to do so. However, the course of what happens over my lifetime is still undecided and I would like to know that I am at least making a contribution to my fate.
I am four years away from turning 30 and about to vote in my third election. In the past two elections I have voted in, neither candidate has won. It is very disheartening, to say the least, as I do feel passionately about politics and the course this country takes. After all, I don’t want to bring the children I will eventually have into a society that is falling apart. I know people my age are known for their selfishness, self-centeredness and general lack of caring about anything beyond their own lives, but personally I don’t want to be that ignorant. I am not trying to sound negative or say the U.S. is doomed or anything like that. But when you look at how many people my age genuinely don’t care about voting or the candidates or the issues, it is scary. Granted, being in the journalism world opens me up to many people who do care. My place of employment, for example, is full of people my age all with an opinion on the election and the candidates. Something I think is great. But when I look beyond here and at some of my friends, they couldn’t be bothered to care. Why is that? Do we think that what happens now will not affect us later? Are we so tightly wrapped up in our own bubble that we don’t see how society works as a whole and that if everybody ignored what is important and what needs to be done, our world would fall apart? I am not in any position to tell people who to vote for or what to care about. But I do wish that people my age would just care. Just a little. Follow the candidates, read about the issues, pay attention to the polls or just register to vote. I know there is a very large majority of Americans that don’t think they can make any difference so why bother, but I think the current situation our country is in shows just how dangerous that attitude is. And just how far down the United States can fall (and how fast) if people give up the control they have to make a difference in our country.
I recently watched the John Adams series on HBO (watch it if you haven’t) and I was really awe-inspired by how hard our ancestors fought to give us the freedoms we have today. We are very lucky. And its time that we start to take advantage of those freedoms and bring our country back to what it is meant to be.