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Should 16 year olds have the right to vote? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Should 16 year olds be allowed to vote?
    Yes
    38.83%
    No
    54.37%
    Not sure
    6.80%

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    In my opinion, being given the chance to make your voice heard at a young age will hopefully encourage you to engage in politics as you get older, instead of ignoring it. Too many people criticise 16 and 17 year olds, believing that our youth prevents us from making serious decisions, but we are being deprived of a golden opportunity - and changing the country.

    Enough on my thoughts. What do you think?
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    I think if you're old enough to legally conceive children and create life then it seems stupid that you're too irresponsible to vote. There are politically engaged 15 year olds and there are people clueless about politics in their 40s voting (this isn't saying that people should vote starting at anyage).

    there should. E more effort to teach children politics, specifically on ideology of parties.
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    (Original post by CharmingCat)
    In my opinion, being given the chance to make your voice heard at a young age will hopefully encourage you to engage in politics as you get older, instead of ignoring it. Too many people criticise 16 and 17 year olds, believing that our youth prevents us from making serious decisions, but we are being deprived of a golden opportunity - and changing the country.

    Enough on my thoughts. What do you think?
    Yes, but only because I am 16.

    Please add a poll

    EDIT: Thanks for adding one.
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    Given much of what I read on here, I'm not sure raising it to 21 would be enough. :rolleyes:
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    I concur with the above. If tsr is anything to go by I definately don't think 16 year olds should vote.

    Just because you can legally have kids at 16 doesn't mean it's a good idea
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    (Original post by Simes)
    Given much of what I read on here, I'm not sure raising it to 21 would be enough. :rolleyes:
    Generally people with bigoted beliefs tend to be more vocal on TSR which may be why.
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    No. I don't see any sense in the argument that it will encourage young people to engage in politics - why would it? The fact that adults can vote doesn't seem to have stopped a mass disengagement from politics - in the last election only 65% of the electorate bothered to vote at all. I also don't believe that most 16-year-olds are intellectually mature enough to understand key issues and come to balanced conclusions about them. The current limit is perfectly sensible since it is the age of adulthood; we have more important policies to be devising and implementing.
    • Welcome Squad
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    Welcome Squad
    I think its not fair that we don't have a political voice to change our education.

    Recently reforms in education haven't been so great
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    No. I don't see any sense in the argument that it will encourage young people to engage in politics - why would it? The fact that adults can vote doesn't seem to have stopped a mass disengagement from politics - in the last election only 65% of the electorate bothered to vote at all. I also don't believe that most 16-year-olds are intellectually mature enough to understand key issues and come to balanced conclusions about them. The current limit is perfectly sensible since it is the age of adulthood; we have more important policies to be devising and implementing.
    Would you have said the same about the Scotland referendum? (just wondering).
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    (Original post by flibber)
    Would you have said the same about the Scotland referendum? (just wondering).
    I don't understand what you're asking.
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    I don't understand what you're asking.
    I mean in the Scotland referendum, 16 and 17 year olds were allowed to vote. Would you have argued that they shouldn't have been allowed to vote?
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    I don't understand what you're asking.
    Well what did you think of its use in the referendum and its effect on the voters in question?
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    (Original post by flibber)
    I mean in the Scotland referendum, 16 and 17 year olds were allowed to vote. Would you have argued that they shouldn't have been allowed to vote?
    I think that was appropriate because it was a single political issue and there was a great deal of media coverage featuring the leaders of the two campaigns and explaining the issues etc. so they will have been able to make as informed a decision as any adult. This in addition to the fact that it was an issue of huge significance for their country and they are its future generation.
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    Depends. With 16 year olds now, no they shouldn't be able to vote. The vast majority of 16 year olds I see haven't got a clue about politics and parties (but I guess the same could be said about some adults, but I think to a lesser extent)

    If we were taught about politics and issues in Britain today instead of those pointless dance lessons(why?!?!?!), then sure, we should get to vote. I see 16 year olds now seeing green energy and global warming as big an issue as immigration thanks to being told about it non-stop in school, so will go to vote greens, despite not looking into any other policies, issues or solutions.

    This is from my experience with the rest of my generation
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    I think that was appropriate because it was a single political issue and there was a great deal of media coverage featuring the leaders of the two campaigns and explaining the issues etc. so they will have been able to make as informed a decision as any adult. This in addition to the fact that it was an issue of huge significance for their country and they are its future generation.
    Then would you say that 16 and 17 years old should be able to vote if there were a referendum directly concerning them (e.g. education- I know you'd never actually get one of them)?
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    (Original post by flibber)
    Then would you say that 16 and 17 years old should be able to vote if there were a referendum directly concerning them (e.g. education- I know you'd never actually get one of them)?
    It would depend on what the issue was and the individual circumstances surrounding it, but as I say I would support some instances like the Scottish referendum.
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    (Original post by Birkenhead)
    It would depend on what the issue was and the individual circumstances surrounding it, but as I say I would support some instances like the Scottish referendum.
    Would you say that most 16 years olds are naturally immature, or would you let them vote if AstroNandos' suggestion above was implemented?
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    (Original post by flibber)
    Would you say that most 16 years olds are naturally immature, or would you let them vote if AstroNandos' suggestion above was implemented?
    Partly they are generally naturally immature, partly there is not much by way of education from parents and schools on political issues. I would probably still think that the current limit is appropriate.

    Let's not forget that most of the people and certainly the parties that support this policy have a vested interest to do so because they stand more to gain by way of votes from 16 and 17-year-olds than others - the Greens and the Lib Dems, for example.
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    (Original post by Simes)
    Given much of what I read on here, I'm not sure raising it to 21 would be enough. :rolleyes:
    Yeah 16 yo are too ignorant to vote. I even think 18 is too early.
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    I think 16 & 17 year olds should be allowed to vote. It is unfair that so many decisions are made on our behalf when we have little/even no say. Additionally the type of decisions we are legally allowed to make (such as university places/degrees, sex, driving a car) require, in my opinion, 'adult' thinking.

    I know it has already been mentioned and shot down, but I do believe it will engage many more people with politics. Being able to vote is known as a big responsibility and makes people feel heard, imagine the excitement 16 year olds would have in school when they can discuss who they'll be voting for. It would give reasoning to make politics more integrated into the education system (such as in detail in citizenship), as students would care more because they know they can actually have an effect instead of just learning a bunch of content that won't be applied for another few years.

    Think about the future - if voting is seriously considered in a learning environment, every year more people will take it more seriously and so the next generation will have less people abusing their voting power.

    Another point that has already been made: many people argue that 16 year olds wouldn't handle the responsibility properly, yet some 40 year olds are allowed to who can't handle it either. There are many intellectual 16 and 17 year olds more than mature enough to make an informed decision, due to this it is silly to cut them off from the opportunity. You wouldn't stop older people because some aren't responsible enough, so don't do it to younger people.

    I think that you don't become an adult at 18 anymore. Yes many go to uni or leave school at this age but prior to that you need to take responsibility in your studies and many other activities in an 'adult way' to be successful. If the government wants to make us think like adults so we can cope with the (not harder content) but harder qualifications structure (such as A-level exams at the end of year 13?!), then they should treat us like adults too and let us have voting power so we have a choice on what sort of academic structure we must endeavour, or what uni fees we will have to pay when we get there, or the tax regime we must adapt to when we leave school.

    Aside from a poor rant and terrible grammar, I rest my damn case.


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