Its okay to feel disillusioned from politics. To feel as if all of this election rhetoric flying around your head at the moment is unreachable and completely irrelevant to you particularly. It's complicated and boring. Why is it even important? Especially as a young person, why should this stuff matter to me?
I took an interest in politics at a young age, watching the news every night has always been a big thing in our household. I understood the importance of political conversation, however I, like any young person these days have at times, felt disparaged and put off by the thought of politics. Especially after policies such as the rise in tuition fees by the Liberal Democrats. Or the lack of MPs or parties talking about the importance of better mental health education in schools. It's easy to feel as if your voice isn't being heard and our generation isn't being represented. The majority of young people, due to online influences and holding more progressive views, are affiliating themselves with 'liberal' ideologies. And are therefore colliding with parties such as the Liberal Democrats, Labour and the Greens.
However because of this disillusion young people are known for feeling towards politics, people like Theresa May are relying on a low turnout from young people to ensure a Conservative majority on June the 8th. She's relying on young people to continue to feel out of touch with politics so much so that they don't vote. I don't know about you though, but I am proud of my generation. We are incredibly politically charged, knowledgeable and passionate. The progression of the influence of social media on young peoples political involvement has meant that we are increasingly becoming more outspoken and more involved in politics locally and nationally. We are using our voices, and our online platforms to impact real change, just look at what I'm doing right now. Writing political articles at 19 to inform and impact other young people.
Don't let your political opinions and your voice only reach the online forums though. Don't speak out on Twitter and not in real life. Your opinions and political rhetoric mean nothing without you actually voting. If you're sick of older generations treating you as this lazy, uninformed, phone addicted lump, then act on it. Change their perceptions by openly defying them. Get out and campaign for your local MPs, start political discussions in your household, educate yourself on policies and statistics. From the small acts of defiance to the big, whatever you choose to do, dare to defy others expectations of our generation by showing them you actually give a shit.
It really doesn't feel like any of it matters and whoever will get in will screw over our generation further, so what's the point right? You have no idea how lucky we are to be living in such a democratic and free country. We're able to vote and actually have a say as to who will be governing us, not everyone our age around the world can say the same. And as for the complexity of the policies and manifestos, you aren't expected to understand everything. Your parents cannot honestly look you in the eye and tell you they understood every aspect of politics at your age. There will always be grey areas within politics that we don't understand whether that's statistics, laws, bills, foreign policy, whatever. But this doesn't mean that there aren't aspects you do understand. I guarantee you understand and know way more than you think. Politics can infiltrate your life without you even knowing it, from overhearing others discussing politics to hearing MPs argue on the radio. I assure you, you know a lot already.
And if you're unsure on anything, any specific policy or plan made by a party, the internet is an incredible resource. I don't have to tell my generation how to Google something. Find online outlets and news organisations that you trust and educate yourself. It really is that easy.
Every policy made, every law passed will affect you or someone you know I promise you. It can feel as if this big political machine has no impact on your life, the posh, Westminster elite have no bearing on us and the lives we live. But unfortunately they do. If you want to make a real change, affect positive progression in our society, logic tells you to vote. I can't tell you who you should vote for, that decision lies with you. But take this time before June the 8th to research as much as you can. Watch the TV debates, watch the Question Time episodes, find YouTube speeches from party political leaders and watch the news.
This election will pave the way for the new leader of our country. Whether you're most passionate about Brexit, student university fees, immigration, social care the next leader of our country will decide how all of that is laid out. They will be deciding what the future of this country is going to look like.
You can't simultaneously complain about the future of this country whilst doing nothing about it. Don't sit on your a**e and pretend this election has nothing to do with you. Don't prove Theresa May and the older generations right. Defy any expectations they may have about you and show that you really do give a shit about your future.