by John Hawkins | March 8, 2004 11:36 pm
Back in November of 2003, I said the Germans were “off the charts on the wackymeter” because they had 47 MPS who wanted to give children vote from the day they pop out of the womb.
Well apparently the Germans aren’t the only wacky ones because there are some California Democrats who want to give kids young as 14 the right to vote…
“Sen. John Vasconcellos, D-Santa Clara, proposed the idea alongside three other lawmakers, saying the Internet, cellular phones, multichannel television and a diverse society makes today’s teens better informed than generations of their predecessors.
Coming on the heels of an expected record low turnout among adults in the March 2 election, Vasconcellos would give 16-year-olds a half vote and 14-year-old a quarter vote in state elections beginning in 2006.
The idea, formally called “Training Wheels for Citizenship,” first requires two-thirds approval by the Legislature to appear on this November’s ballot.
…”When we gave the vote to those who didn’t own property, then to women, then to persons of all colors, we added to the richness of our democratic dialogue and our own nation’s integrity and its model for the world,” he said, calling it time to further extend the vote.
A Republican colleague called it “the nuttiest idea I’ve ever heard.”
Is this what the Democrats have been reduced to? “The Republicans took the governorship! So let’s get a bunch of 14 & 16 year olds who know more about Harry Potter than government and history and trick them into voting for us until they get smarten up as they get older and vote Republican.”
The reality is that kids who 16 years old or younger have absolutely no business voting. For the most part, they know almost nothing about politics and history, have only had jobs as burger flippers or worse if they’ve had jobs at all, and have been living on their parent’s dime their whole life. Very few kids that age don’t have the life experience to go out and vote.
Heck, the average college kid doesn’t even have enough of an understanding of politics and life to be voting in my opinion. In fact, I’d support raising the voting age to 21 except that I think it would be wrong to deny a vote to 18 year olds who are willing to risk their lives for our country in the military.
Casting your vote is serious business and it should be treated that way. That’s why 16 year old kids shouldn’t be voting…
PS: I know there are small numbers of kids and significantly larger numbers of college age kids who are mature and informed enough to vote. But, they are in the minority…by far. So if you are one of those younger “mature and informed” voters, don’t take it personally. What I said wasn’t aimed at you…
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