Guest post from Coleg Cambria student, Callum Murray
It only seems democratic to give the right to vote to 16 year olds. If politics is open to the masses then surely government can be more representative of the public and therefore a fairer government. Surely this idea of 16 year olds being given the vote would go hand in hand with further political education in schools, if young people are more informed then this opinion of 16 year olds not being mature enough to vote would be void.
Education about politics teaches us more about the world around us and also teaches young people to become free thinkers and develop opinions by themselves, this will enhance the way they see the world and enhance their political choice. If there is further political education on issues like the voting system, how political parties work and other issues such as constitutional affairs then these problems would be more up for discussion and political ideas would be explored especially amongst young people.
The way to enhance more people, not just those who are young to vote, doesn’t just lie in political education but the obligation of politicians to be more in touch with their constituents. All politics is local and to stop this problem of the public feeling isolated from the political world and political discussion, politicians need to reach out to the people in their local community gather local
opinion and thus engage the local people in politics.
If people really want the public to be more interested in politics then why do we restrict the democratic right to vote away from those who are 16 and actually are interested in politics?
The Scottish referendum last year has shown that young people are interested in voting and making political decisions. If we are educated and politicians do reach out to us then surely UK democracy is enhanced. That is why I am in favour of 16 year old having the vote.