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16-17 year old's protest after being blocked from the EU referendum Watch

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    I think 16 and 17 year olds are basically young adults, if you're old enough to have sex, get a job and get married (with consent) and drink alcohol in a bar (under certain conditions) then you are old enough to have a say in your future. I don't believe that the vast majority would be easily swayed by others, especially if their education in schools is especially centred around being unbiased and encouraging debate between students.

    People really underestimate what young people can do these days, because a lot of them are really quite intelligent people.
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    (Original post by Blue_Mason)
    For the sake of our democracy, do not let 16 year kids, cast important votes in decisions that is beyond their understanding.

    They know nothing, and should only worry about exams and facebook
    That is not true

    at 16 everyone has different mental abilities

    at 70 everyone has different metal abilities

    the fact that pretty much everything in the UK charges adult prices for 16+ says it all

    so at 16 they should be able to adult things and pay adult rates but they cannot vote? makes sense
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    It's funny how older people complain about young people not getting involved in politics enough but when they do they turn around and say to them "no ur supposed to only care about selfies n facebook ur not old enough"
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    I think many are scared to speak out heir true feelings and give in to peer pressure so to speak. Many are fearful of becoming social pariahs, particularly an issue now that the rise of social media has occurred and that generation pretty much don't know a world outside of the Internet. Wouldn't give them the vote, they can serve their time like everyone else had to
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    (Original post by neal95)
    I think many are scared to speak out heir true feelings and give in to peer pressure so to speak. Many are fearful of becoming social pariahs, particularly an issue now that the rise of social media has occurred and that generation pretty much don't know a world outside of the Internet. Wouldn't give them the vote, they can serve their time like everyone else had to
    Well perhaps some may not tell their friends how they will vote, but seeing how voting is designed to be anonymous there'd still be nothing to stop them voting how they want.
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    (Original post by Kieran1996)
    That is not true

    at 16 everyone has different mental abilities

    at 70 everyone has different metal abilities

    the fact that pretty much everything in the UK charges adult prices for 16+ says it all

    so at 16 they should be able to adult things and pay adult rates but they cannot vote? makes sense
    The average 16 year old does not have the mental capability to rationally and to responsibly cast a heavy decision without influence.
    Those 16 year olds in certain parts of the country would have vote leave, because their parents,grandparents and peers would have voted leave.
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    (Original post by Josb)
    How many?
    It doesn't say how many but in the photos you can see other people were there.
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    (Original post by Mathemagicien)
    Too easily influenced by their teachers, not enough real world experience. However, I agree that some 16 year olds are very capable of using their vote wisely
    As opposed to 18-21 year olds who can never be influenced by their university lecturers.

    Or anyone being influenced by their families. Or friends. Or colleagues. Or advertising from political parties. Or interviews on the news.

    Everyone is influenced by the people around them and most 16 year olds are capable of making an informed decision, even if most haven't bothered at that stage to learn how to become informed.

    Also, real world experience is actually a pretty bad meter of someone's ability to make an informed decision. I've worked a few part time jobs in the 'real' world, but spent five years at university. So most of my adult life has been outside of the so called 'real world' but I have the ability to look for and find facts and make informed judgements from those. To put it another way: the plural of anecdote is not data.
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    All these idiotic 16 and 17 year olds thinking they're smart and know a thing or two about international politics. Aren't hormones funny.
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    (Original post by Blue_Mason)
    The average 16 year old does not have the mental capability to rationally and to responsibly cast a heavy decision without influence.
    Those 16 year olds in certain parts of the country would have vote leave, because their parents,grandparents and peers would have voted leave.
    How have you come to that judgement?

    So 70 year olds are not influenced?

    Everyone is influenced by people around them / family / friends etc
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    (Original post by Manitude)
    As opposed to 18-21 year olds who can never be influenced by their university lecturers.
    You'd hope 18-21 year olds are a little more able to think for themselves

    Or anyone being influenced by their families. Or friends. Or colleagues.
    This is not on an a large scale, whereas a teacher has a position of authority over many pupils

    Or advertising from political parties. Or interviews on the news.
    This is on a large scale, but many different parties have a say, and this is not done from a position of authority

    Everyone is influenced by the people around them and most 16 year olds are capable of making an informed decision, even if most haven't bothered at that stage to learn how to become informed.
    I agree we should give 16 year olds the chance to vote, but only the ones who pass a political knowledge or IQ test, which would allay many of my criticisms

    Also, real world experience is actually a pretty bad meter of someone's ability to make an informed decision. I've worked a few part time jobs in the 'real' world, but spent five years at university. So most of my adult life has been outside of the so called 'real world' but I have the ability to look for and find facts and make informed judgements from those. To put it another way: the plural of anecdote is not data.
    Yes, I agree, but not many people (in fact, very very few) actually bother sifting through lots of data. The people who do, as I've said, should be allowed to vote
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    (Original post by Mathemagicien)
    You'd hope 18-21 year olds are a little more able to think for themselves

    Yes, but the pretend that on the day of your 18th birthday you suddenly gain the ability to not be influenced by teachers is silly.

    I was at sixth form when the 2010 general election happened, and it was a month before my 18th birthday. Many of my friends were 18 and could vote and were just as susceptible to bias from our teachers as I was (despite being 17). I definitely agree there should be some provision for more politically aware youths to have a say in some form but I'm not convinced by the concept of an IQ test. A political knowledge test may be more appropriate, though.
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    Should the voting age be lowered from 18 to 16?

    To look at some of the arguments:

    Why should it be 18? I wont magically be able to understand more when I turn 18...
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    No you wont, but there needs to be a cut off, as it would be highly impractical to work on a person-by-person basis. By changing the cut-off to 16, you will still have some 15 year old capable of voting, who wont understand why they cant. The 18 age limit is not saying that you personally at the age of 18 are finally capable of voting, it is saying: 'this is the most reasonable line the government can draw between young person and adult'


    But I can do X and X and X at 16, so why not vote???

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    There is a lot you can do, but in the UK you are still not an independent adult at 16. You must by law be in some form of education or training, and are not lawfully allowed to go off and start your independent life. Even if you were able to choose for yourself entirely what you want to do, you would not have had a chance to do it for long enough to gain much meaningful experience.


    I am not easily influenced!!

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    Maybe not. But most are.

    I answer this as a teacher - I have been teaching 16-17 year olds in different countries for years now, and in fact by and large you are incredibly easy to be influenced. Not always by your teacher, but by the whole climate around you, including your friends.

    At that age, you are at the height of your social development, and its why we see so much more of a 'group opinion' within young people then old people. Trends are much more important, and everyone is desperate for groups, and to fit in. You may think you are an exception, and maybe you are, but by and large any adult who works in a school can see it. The vast majority of young people who do not really care about politics, will side with the prevailing opinion of those who do, just because it is easier and allows them to fit in more.

    The major influences on a young person are:

    Family - No collective bias
    Friends - Bias towards the majority
    School environment - Huge bias towards REMAIN
    Creative modern media - Huge bias towards REMAIN
    Internet - Self confirming bias

    Its no surprise that many young people will vote REMAIN when a large majority of their teachers will, and an even larger majority of their role-models and celebrity influences will.


    I know more about politics then my mum!!


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    Probably. Many old people know very little, especially when it comes to theoretical knowledge, or world affairs.

    But this line of reasoning misses the point of the 18 year old requirement. That requirement is not set to establish a level of intelligence required to vote, it is set to establish a level of experience required to vote.

    It is set at that age, because that is when traditionally you become an adult, and you take on the full responsibilities that entails. It makes no requirement of knowledge, but just that you have the experience and understanding of an adult living in this country. Which at 16 you simply do not.

    When I was 16 I thought my parents were idiots, becuase I had far far more theoretical/academic knowledge then them. Any subject, I would take them apart.. Yet now as an adult, years after graduation, someone who runs their own business, supports their family, and has experienced a good range of adult life, I can easily say I was very very wrong.

    There is so much of life, that as a young person you have not yet experienced. At turning 16, many will not have ever worked, most will lead a life that is entirely reliant on others, most will lead a life that revolves around 1 singular thing: school, very few will have true responsibility over anything other then themselves, and even fewer will have had real experience managing budgets, seeing future plans from the outset to conclusion, and very few will have had the experience of being able to witness change.

    It is one of the most important things that establishes why older people should vote in the referendum, and not 16 year olds. You have not seen enough of the world, no where close. At 16 you have probably only been politically aware for 3-4 years at the most. A very small time-span that has let you only see 1 PM, one government, you have only witnessed one general election, have only ever experienced life of modern mass immigration, and within our current political system. Your reality is tiny, and whilst you have knowledge outside it, you lack the first hand experience to truly understand it. An older person though has seen governments come and go, they have seen major changes to this country, lived through highs and lows.. they are much less reactionary and much more grounded in their understanding of the present, and how it fits into a larger picture.

    It is why this over-reaction we are seeing is mainly coming from younger voters.. to you, your world has been shattered, you have only ever known this modern reality, and now its gone. To a 70 year old though, this is one of many changes they have witnessed in their life, and they can much better understand how it fits in to the larger context, and how there is little cause to panic. The country is not ruined, any more so then it has been every time we have faced a dramatic challenge.


    So here is my question to all you young voters:

    Should we lower the age to 16? Or should we raise the age to 21?

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    Its a very unpopular opinion, but as stated above, 18 was set as the age that people conform to the life of an adult in society, and all that is expected of it.

    I would argue that university defies this, and that it is not until many people graduate (if they went straight from school) that they first experience adult life. There is a huge change to be witnessed in people after they graduate, you look around and see all your friends grow up, and finally become adults, and you realise that before that you were really closer to teenagers then adults.

    The reality is that students at university have lives that closer resemble teenage lives then adult lives, and its heavily reflected in their voting. When looking back at previous generations, after 18 there was always a heavy shift to the right.. but these days that shift only happens after people graduate.. we have half the population who are deferring traditional adult hood for 3-4 years, and I would argue there is a strong case to reflect this in the age of voting.

    Not yet, but if the percentage of university students rose above 50, then I would suggest this as a measure to take.

    Ask any graduate and they will tell you about how they loved uni, and wish they were back? why.. because its like being a kid again, or at least certainly in comparison to the reality of work and responsibilities that you face upon graduation and starting a family.
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    (Original post by Manitude)
    Yes, but the pretend that on the day of your 18th birthday you suddenly gain the ability to not be influenced by teachers is silly.
    Oh, I know, ideally we'd have a test for people of all ages, but that'll never happen.

    I was at sixth form when the 2010 general election happened, and it was a month before my 18th birthday. Many of my friends were 18 and could vote and were just as susceptible to bias from our teachers as I was (despite being 17). I definitely agree there should be some provision for more politically aware youths to have a say in some form but I'm not convinced by the concept of an IQ test. A political knowledge test may be more appropriate, though.
    In my free time, I look at loads of graphs regarding the GDPs, debts, R&D investment, and every aspect of the demographics of loads of countries, and the popularity and ideologies of various parties across Europe. I believe I have a much better grasp of the European political and economic situation, especially long term trends, than most people. I didn't get to vote in the EU referendum

    A political knowledge test would be preferable, I only suggest an IQ test because it is probably quite difficult to introduce a political knowledge test that doesn't introduce some sort of bias.
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    In terms of a politically aware test the only fair way to do it would be to ensure everyone has to take it - which in theory would be great and would lead to better decisions being made, but in practise I really can't see any parties even trying to open that bag of worms. On the other hand, a simple vote at 16+ with no other attached controversies is the option which has some chance of being accepted. Unfortunately we can't just think about what should happen in a perfect world, we have to think about what actually has a chance of being passed if we want a chance at a better, fairer world.
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    (Original post by Kieran1996)
    How have you come to that judgement?

    So 70 year olds are not influenced?

    Everyone is influenced by people around them / family / friends etc
    Tbh I do not think that 70 year olds should be able to vote without passing a test
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    (Original post by Blue_Mason)
    Tbh I do not think that 70 year olds should be able to vote without passing a test
    Well in this case I cannot argue with your logic as it seems that you think those too young and those too old should not vote which would be fair
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    They shouldn't be given a vote because they are easily brainwashed by left wing propaganda which has corrupted the education system in this country. They fell for the scaremongering, the business leaders, industry experts threatening to close everything down, move everything way, all of which is false now, 4 months of campaigning on Twitter and every argument they need an insult, not to say they are all like this, but a large majority. I'd be in favour of moving the minimum age to 21, because I've seen how many people my age believe the bull spewed by the media and government, and I am 20. Diddums.
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    Children can't vote. Sorry. Unless you also think that 16-17 should be judged like adults and go in the same prisons.
 
 
 
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