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Should teens be able to vote?


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Hi people,
So in my debate class we are having a debate (wow what a concept) on wether or not 17 and 16 yearolds should be aloud to vote. I was wondering if I could get all your opinoins on the subject.
Should the right to vote be given to 17 and 16 year olds?
Thanks

[COLOR=Red][SIZE=1]Changed thread title to something a little more topic related :animesmil - [B]Stuart.[/B][/SIZE][/COLOR]
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[FONT=Times New Roman][COLOR=Sienna]If they're politically competent than yes... it should be like a special-cases-only type of thing, were somone who truely wants to vote and be examined and if they're found to be competent than they can vote. But not widespread, no.

Oh, and how is this anything like giving them the right to smoke or somthing like that? I mean, I get it, they both rot your brain, but... [/COLOR][/FONT]
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[size=1][font=georgia]Nah. I'm sure there are teens that know right from wrong, and can make good decisions. But as an overall, no. Teens are more likely to be under such influence and pressure rather then adults, and most likely still growing up and figuring out themselves and making decisions. So, give them time. It's always a possibility they couldn't make such 'great' decisions, even by the time they reach to vote, but the human race is far from perfect, so..That's only my opinion, don't kill me.[/size][/font]
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[quote name='Ziggy Stardust][font=Times New Roman][color=Sienna]If they're politically competent than yes... it should be like a special-cases-only type of thing, were somone who truely wants to vote and be examined and if they're found to be competent than they can vote. But not widespread, no. [/color'][/font][/quote] Problem is that that wouldn't work, because America is way too big to even attempt something like that. Of course, I guess you could always put a quiz, consisting of questions about the topic up for vote, into the voting machines, and make people take it before being allowed to vote. The results are tallied immediately, and if they don't get something like an 85% on it, they're deemed not well informed enough about the issue to cast a vote on it.

In fact, that doesn't sound like too bad an idea. ¬¬

But in lieu of that, then no. sixteen and seventeen year olds should never vote, and frankly, we're already pushing it at eighteen. There may be some that are informed and concerned enough to be responsible voters, but not nearly enough to compensate for all the awful ones. They can stick it out for another year or two.
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[FONT=Arial]I don't think I'm ever going to vote, simply because I just don't care. However, I don't think that even at sixteen or seventeen kids will be ready to make such a decision. Lots of people are majorly influenced by their parents or friends who are influenced by parents, and will make a choice that is not their own. Honestly, if it wouldn't make such a big difference in their own personal lives (I don't know any people around that age who are really so affected by politics) then I don't think they really care, anyway. Why throw the vote?[/FONT]
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I'm 16, almost 17, and I know for a fact that we should NOT be allowed to vote. Those of us (like myself, not to be conceited, just truthful) who are not politicially inept and have the concept of it in the right place are able to wait. I'm capable to wait. I don't want to vote yet. I'm personally only half ready. I'd love to vote, BUT, I'd have to worry about parental opinions on whoever I would vote for, worry about my dad wanting to disown me because I have different opinions (trust me, I DO NOT need that, I already come close to it because of some of my opinions). I can wait.
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[size=1]I don't understand why young teens would want to vote. Enjoy your blissful youth while you can~!

Now, like it's been said before, most of the population's young teenagers really aren't politically aware of what's going on in the world today. Sure, you see all the violence and war on the news, but do you [i]really[/i] understand what is going on? ****, I'm 20 and I'm still oblivious to what exactly goes on these days.

Besides, 16-17 is just a year or two away from being eligible anyhow. Enjoy your young years of not having to worry about voting and all that jazz while it lasts.[/size]
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[size=1]Are you a teenager at eigh[b]teen[/b]?

Anyway, I think the current voting age is quite alright. As for those who don't vote, I think it's foolish. Why waste your Constitutional priviledge, when the matters DO affect you, and you CAN change them if you vote? People always think "it's only one..." and those people make up half of America. Every little bit counts.

Everyone's acting like voting is some collosal task that one must undertake. It's really quite simple -- you watch the news, maybe read the paper every now and again, keep in sync with the issues of the day, and figure out where you stand on them. What's so stressful and tense about all of this? Why should everyone "cherish the years before [they] can vote"?[/size]
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I don't think so. Most 16/17 year olds aren't considered to be "mature adults", although 18 arguably isn't much better. But the reason 18 year old can vote is because they can go off to war, so if you want 16/17 year olds fighting wars....

Seriously, I just want to enjoy my life right now. I'm more politically aware than the average person, but I like debating about it and thinking about politics, not necessarily making up my mind about every single issue. Not to mention that today making an informed decision means doing your own research and not just listening to everything you hear or read, which is something I'm not looking foward to, but it's a civic responsibility type thing, and I want to be informed.

And if I vote, I have the right to complain about how the government's working.
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[SIZE=1]Voting is no big, life altering, innocence snatching event you know. Seriously, you don't think you know enough about politics now, you probably still won't when you [I]are[/I] old enough. Most of the time its about which candidate hasn't ****** up as much this year.

P.S No I don't think 16/17 year olds should be allowed to vote, thats just crazy talk. Hell I think they should move it back up to 21[/SIZE]
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[COLOR=#004a6f]I believe 16 and 17 year olds should be able to vote. The government has a big impact on education of course. Wouldn't you like to have a say in matters concerning postsecondary education so the results are there when you attend university or college?

I don't think voting is a huge weight on teen's shoulders, and if they are educated enough in political matters, they should be allowed to make there voices heard. Isn't this the kind of responsibility that teenagers want?

However, it's important that they are educated in politics to be allowed to vote. In Ontario, Canada, we have a mandatory civics course in grade 10.[/COLOR]
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[COLOR=DarkSlateGray][SIZE=1][FONT=Comic Sans MS]Well I would just think that most of them just are still not ready to vote yet. Not only is it because they are still mostly unaware what is going on around the world, but also the fact that they also tend to make very bad choices, like under age pregnancy, drunk driving, and things like that.

Even if they were allowed to choose who they would want for president, and they just basicly did a vote on who was the most popular or something like that. Would you be able to imagine what life would be like then? Having the country you live in be run by someone who was the most popular in the eyes of the people, but wasn't really qualified enough to be the president? I know for a fact that I would highly dislike living like that.[/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR]
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should 14/17 year olds vote? No. My political governement is different from most of yours since I believe you are almost all American (no offense) I'm canadian and stuck in the one area that is turning into an annoying shitbox called Quebec. Every three years we vote against a certain party that wants to seperate quebec. In my opinion that is retarded because quebec would then be a third world country right in the middle of Canada itself.... anyways I am legal age to vote (20) and even then I dont want my right to vote at times then again I do not want this province to seperate so I try to keep it a province. Some teens would be a bunch of immature brats and vote for it not realising their actions. In my just opinion if they have the responcibilty then yes they can vote if not no.
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[quote name='Ikillion][COLOR=DarkSlateGray][SIZE=1][FONT=Comic Sans MS]Even if they were allowed to choose who they would want for president, and they [b]just basicly did a vote on who was the most popular or something like that[/b]. Would you be able to imagine what life would be like then? [b]Having the country you live in be run by someone who was the most popular in the eyes of the people, but wasn't really qualified enough to be the president?[/b] I know for a fact that I would highly dislike living like that.[/FONT][/SIZE'][/COLOR][/quote][color=55555][font=trebuchet ms]Because that has never happened before. Yes?

Anyway, Who cares if they give seventeen year olds the vote? Will they use it? Survey says...no. And by "survey," I mean "voting records."

Frankly, eighteen is an arbitrary cut off. There are many, many people over the age of eighteen whom most of you would consider "unfit" to vote. Senior citizens? Senile, and they'll be dead soon anyway. Who cares? Anyone who dropped out of high school? Definitely not qualified. Anyone who in any way has contact with media--newspapers, magazines,NPR, Howard Stern, The Daily Show, [i]Oprah[/i]...may not in fact be casting their "own" vote, as they are doubtless influenced by other sources. Anyone who watches or appears on [i]Jerry Springer[/i] should be cut from the Voting Eligible, for sure.

Do you see how this works?

Right now, in America, you are considered an adult at eighteen. Therefore, at eighteen, you can assume (the majority) of your rights and responsibilities as a citizen. You can sue (and be sued). You can buy and use tobacco. You can have sex with other adults without legal repercussions for either of you. You can own property. You can marry without parental consent. You can serve jury duty. And you can vote. The drinking debate is best left to another thread, I believe.

So while I see no technical problem with lowering the voting age, I neither think it is necessary nor reasonable to do so. There hardly needs to be a further splintering of "you are an adult at age...." rights.[/font][/color]
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I say nay. We can't determine if teens are competent.. well, maybe if they pass a test or something of the like. Most of the citizens that ARE allowed to vote aren't competent themselves. Teens are too immature to vote. I know i'm definatly too immature to vote, most teens don't even grasp the concepts of what they'd be voting for. Letting teens vote could be potentionally harmful.
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[quote name='Chabichou][COLOR=#004a6f']I believe 16 and 17 year olds should be able to vote. The government has a big impact on education of course. Wouldn't you like to have a say in matters concerning postsecondary education so the results are there when you attend university or college?[/COLOR][/quote]

*Keep in mind that I'm from the US, so all comments henceforth are about the US, and our policies. Cause frankly I don't know much about other countrys' systems
[COLOR=DarkRed]
I agree with Chabichou here. If the policies that our president enforces affect us, and we are expected to live by them, then why don't we get a say in who the president is? Just because we're younger, and therefore stupider? I don't think there's a big jump between 17 and 18 years old in terms of maturity, or necessarily in terms of political knowledge.

Fact is, people and the government believe that as long as you are under the age of 18, your parents own you. So they're the ones who get to make the decisions for your future. And I believe that's wrong. If teenagers have an opinion on who should be making decisions that affect the entire country, they should be able to express those opinions.[/COLOR]
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[QUOTE=Lord Rannos]*Keep in mind that I'm from the US, so all comments henceforth are about the US, and our policies. Cause frankly I don't know much about other countrys' systems
[COLOR=DarkRed]
I agree with Chabichou here. If the policies that our president enforces affect us, and we are expected to live by them, then why don't we get a say in who the president is? Just because we're younger, and therefore stupider? I don't think there's a big jump between 17 and 18 years old in terms of maturity, or necessarily in terms of political knowledge.

Fact is, people and the government believe that as long as you are under the age of 18, your parents own you. So they're the ones who get to make the decisions for your future. And I believe that's wrong. If teenagers have an opinion on who should be making decisions that affect the entire country, they should be able to express those opinions.[/COLOR][/QUOTE]
[size=1]Eighteen is when the government recognizes you as an 'adult,' capable of making your own decisions, being responsible for your own actions, and so forth. It's not a question of how exactly less mature a 17-year-old is than a 18 -- it's a right you recieve when you become an adult. Yes, the understanding is that your parents would essentially have two votes.

What's the difference between political knowledge from 15 to 16? How about 16 to 17? Maybe 17 to 18? You get my point, right? It's nigh impossible to determine this for one person, let alone an entire nation where maturity widely varies. Therefore, the government slaps the voting age together with the other ones your recieve.

I think the government is right on this one, personally.[/size]
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[SIZE=1]Interesting, most interesting.

No they shouldn't, personally I think giving the vote to those aged sixteen and seventeen would be a fairly bad idea as it's not until you're quite a bit older that you fully understand the impact of voting. Most of the arguments on maturity have already been given, and while I accept that there are some people younger than eighteen who might be mature enough to understand the voting process fully, most people aged under eighteen don't and wouldn't take it seriously. While eighteen itself might be a bit young to declare people legal adults, I suppose you have to start somewhere.[/SIZE]
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[COLOR=DarkSlateBlue][SIZE=1]Teens(13-17) voting? Are you crazy? Most teens have more important things(to them at least) to do than put there mind towards politics, competently voting for a candidate that they believe will lead the country better. I wouldn't mind the country raising the age to vote to 20 or 21. I'm sure the only younger folk that would vote, and be politically active, would be those crazy mohawky, punkish and/or hippy 'everything i do is a statement against everything' kids. Of course voting is a right Setting up a political or civic test to be able to vote would probably draw alot of fire from critics. I'd rather have 10,000 politically educated voters vote than 100,000 voters that vote for the candidate with the nicer smile. But hey...one can only hope people choose candidates based on their platforms and their potential leadership leading the country into a 'golden' age. :animesigh [/SIZE] [/COLOR]
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