OpEd: Be the change you want to see

There is a possible political revolution brewing. This revolution will not be led by a man wearing a white wig. Although these candidates also have questionable hair styles, this revolution may be led by a 74 year old Jewish, Democratic socialist senator from Brooklyn named Bernie Sanders. Or, quite possibly, a business tycoon and reality TV star named Donald Trump.

The unlikely rise of the grouchy senator in the Democratic polls has not come without forewarning. Sanders’ passion for taking down big business, fixing wealth inequality, and abolishing student debt has made him very appealing to progressives under 25 and middle class voters. Much like the 2008 election of President Obama, the youth are playing a big role in the success of the campaign. His grassroots efforts on social media and in small penny donations appeal to the youth and are proving to be very advantageous. This illustrates that the youth have power.

However, in my recommendation, to avoid having a political revolution in extremist form about every 8 years, young adults need to educate themselves more and go out and vote. The amount of political awareness in this country directly correlates with the lack of voter turnout. Out of all of the major international powers, we have the lowest voter turnout rates. This comes from the people’s lack of understanding for the political process, and pessimism for the effectiveness of it.

In a time when over half of Americans are displeased with their government, people need to educate themselves on the issues, form opinions, and make it a point to vote every two years in congressional elections, not just every four years when elections are discussed on the news every day.

There are so many young people who find politics to be egregious and not worth their time, but this is going to be our country pretty soon, so we should start taking responsibility. It is only then that we will see substantial changes in policies and everyday life. A president can do nothing without a cooperative, bipartisan Congress, and people need to realize that and understand the United States government is not a one man show. The old adage holds true: “Be the change you want to see in the world.” And, if not, then the revolution will be televised.

-Sean Ryan ’18, Junior Politics/Opinions Editor

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