Friday, July 06, 2007
I read an article today about how youth in australia shouldn't have the right to vote because they don't know enough about politics. It used their fashion sense, modern television shows, and the fact they occassionally wear Che Guevara on t-shirts as proof that they were mindless children.
How anyone could decide that an entire generation is unfit for voting based on current trends is infuriating. If we judged every generation on theses sorts of things, than no one would ever be allowed to do anything! can we 'subjective'?
I am proud when i see youth wearing Che t-shirts. while i know that they probably don't know the full history behind the face, it makes me hope that they are wearing it to express their desire for cultural freedom. As most political forces, Che has blood on his hands. But what political force doesn't? He stands as an icon for youth-power, cultural freedom, marxism (although this has lost much of its potency) and mixed in with all this there is a hint of bitter defeat. While his life fought, in the end he died without ever seeing his full dream come true.
Its true that most of the television on tv i find trite at best, it doesn't mean that i think all who watch them are without the ablity to think critically. Each reality tv show that asks you to vote, makes the watcher think critically about the contestants.
Fashion, while somewhat a repeat of 1990s, is no more a factor of intellegence than what sort of soap they use. Every generation looks back at photos of what they wore when they were X years old and cringes. Its almost a right of passage in life, to see the fashion you used to wear and wonder what you were thinking.
The youth have just as much right to vote and make mistakes in their votes as anyone else. How else to we expect them to learn and grow into positive members of the country? If we don't allow this, we run the risk of going back to the ways of our forefathers and only allowing white men who own land to vote.