Time for change: my voice is just as important as those a year older

Myra Brown, staff writer

The topic on everyone’s mind is the future, and who or what will effect it. For most people the first thought, of course, are the men and women who run the country, but what a lot of people don’t think of is that students only a few years older than us are about to put their own opinions into the voting box. The legal voting age in the United States has been 18 since 1970, however, there was a lot of controversy about allowing younger people to choose who is leading our country.

The voting age, before the 26th amendment, was 21. People at the time believed that the older you are, the wiser you are.  This might be true, but at the age of 18 a lot of people are still in school and taking a civics or history class and, therefore, are always learning about current events.

There are multiple reasons why the voting age should not be changed. The first and foremost reason is that it could be considered unconstitutional to lower the voting age because the 26th amendment states that 18 is the minimum voting age. The amendment states that “The right of citizens of the United States, who are 18 years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age.”

There are some who believe that lowering the voting age would be for our country, I however, am not one of those people. Of course, everyone is entitled to their own opinion because of the amendments.

The way that people vote this year, will affect my life for the next four years. I, like most people would, love to be able to vote in this election; however, I also feel like I am not yet prepared enough to vote. I, like most people my age, am not prepared for the responsibility of deciding who is going to run our country or state for, at the very least, the next 1,460 days.

At the age of 17, you are not yet considered a legal adult in the United States. You are not able to join the military. The government has already trusted young people enough by allowing them to get licenses and drive cars and trucks. And in my opinion that is a big enough risk. When you are 17, your brain is not yet fully developed which means your priorities are not always straight. Unfortunately, most 17 year olds care more about the newest fad on Tumblr or Instagram than politics.

Although there might be a few 17 year olds that are ready for so much responsibility, the majority of them are not even close. America would not benefit from lowering the voting age from 18 to 17. Being able to vote at the age 18 has been a right of passage into adulthood for a long time in the United States. Be able to vote at the age of 18 is a sign that you are in fact an adult now and if the voting age is changed then so should the legal age of adulthood. If you are able to vote you should also be able to have a credit card, join the military and live on your own. If America decides to change the voting age, they should also change the draft age and other rights of passages that come with the age of 18.

While other countries may change their voting age, I do not think America should because there is so much history behind our voting age. The voting age was already lowered in the 1970s and this was not that long ago, and America is not ready for another large change.