Kids in Politics: Get Out There!

By Amelia Kimball, 7th grade

When was the last time you looked at a newspaper? No, it doesn’t have to be a paper one- I know that those are ‘so retro.’ But really.., When was the last time you saw some sort of notification about what’s going on in the world today?

I really hope that it wasn’t too long ago. Maybe I’m kidding myself by assuming that students today stay involved in current events, but one can hope. Anyway, if you have seen any sort of news publication, there’s a pretty good chance that the headline had something to do with the 2016 presidential election. Yep, that’s right, America gets a new guy this year! (Or girl, considering the circumstances). And, I’m sure you’ve heard the name Donald Trump floating around. If you still don’t know why he’s so important, I’ll tell you now: he’s running for president, and he’s not the only one.

So what? You ask. Why should I care? Good question. You can’t vote. But maybe, just maybe, I’ll be able to convince you that even if your voice won’t matter at the polls, your voice can be heard in peoples’ ears. And maybe, politics could even be a little bit interesting to you.

Fat chance, you say. The word ‘politics’ itself makes you tune out. Well, here’s my comeback of the day: turn on your consciousness. (I know, not so great for a comeback of the day.) Where do you live? America? No way! I was totally assuming you lived somewhere else since you don’t pay attention to American politics. The reality is, you do live in America. And everything that’s going on right now with elections is for America. Your country. The future of America. Your future. The way that your country is being shaped is all coming down to the group of people deciding that they’re good enough to run your country. And considering the high standards you undoubtably set for yourself, you probably need to decide who really meets the standards to run your country.

Now have I got you hooked? Thought so. But, still. You say. I can’t vote. No one cares what a kids thinks! Maybe that’s true, but do YOU care what you think? Is it possible that even if you aren’t heard, politics can still be fun for you?

The fact is that humans are a very opinionated species, and it’s no different with their leaders. Just about everyone has a strong opinion about who should be living in the White House, and they will make sure to do everything they can to not only get that to happen but to see how it goes. For this reason, there are tons of things you can do to track the political goings on and get lots of info. Every time there’s a caucus or primary in the next couple months, track it with a newspaper website. Do your research! Who do you think should take the White House next? Subscribe to that candidate’s email list, to get all the tidbits you need. Track the caucuses. Track the primaries. It’s a great feeling when a candidate whose ideas you support is gaining ground in the election. It’s fun! Fun to stock up on t-shirts, wristbands, posters, stickers, pins…there’s millions of pieces of merchandise out there; people are crazy. If you’re still questioning why this is even worth it, I’ve got one more thing left for you: why not?

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