Caring with passion.
It might be a surprise that a large majority of students at ETHS genuinely care and share opinions about politics on a daily basis.
“Students are very passionate about politics. They have opinions, and they want their opinions to be heard. These opinions can be as much as the Republican presidential race, or something like guns, or something about Black Lives Matter, or something like ISIS in the Middle East,” said Dave Feeley, AP U.S. Government teacher, “The best part I would say is seeing students actively involved in discussions about the political process.”
In many different classes, students will argue their view of how America should run its government. Students also speak about how other countries are being run, whether it is directed to Syria home of ISIS, or Putin dictating Russia. There is so many unique opinions, and in our democracy and republic state, a mix of opinions is exactly what we need.
Even with the presidential election happening about a year in advance, students still respond and speak out to certain phrases that Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton said while speaking at a Presidential Debate. Opposing parties clash in classrooms, and thoughts from candidates on racism, sexism, or classism stir intense debates. Debates in classes may lead to sparking anger for some, however debates can also lead to education on the topics. Seeing different angles on the situation can enhance your knowledge about a certain topic. This passion is needed at our school, and a difference in opinions brings more excitement and thoughtful insight on topics.
“It is important to care about politics because these are the people that will be running your country and choosing all your decisions for you because even though America is a free country, you still don’t have that much choice in what you do. So I think it is important to know
who’s in charge of you and make a decision, because America is pretty lucky to be one of the few countries where you actually get a right to choose that,” says Harrison Witt, sophomore.
Although Witt cares about politics, upperclassmen usually care more about who will be running the country or a new vote by the Supreme Court than the underclassmen, because they are more mature with more experience.
“Not so much for the younger classes, but most of the upperclassmen care about politics for sure, especially most of the seniors,” states Jordan Shapiro, senior, “I will probably care a lot more about it when I can vote.”
The privilege to vote decides the interest of politics for a lot of students. Most of the parents in Evanston care more about politics than we do, because they have more of an opinion that can be heard and will matter. Voting for various elections such as Mayor, Governor, or even the President are only for post-high school ages, so it would make sense that a lot of people care less about political events than people who are above 18.
“Yes because if I was over 18 and I could vote I would feel more responsible to learn more about politics and be more educated on the topic,” explains Charlotte Mulica, junior.
According to Catilin speak, a website which includes information from the US Census Bureau, states that “Only 45% of 18-29 years old voted in the 2012 presidential election.” This evidence is contradicted by the students. Kids are desirous about voting for president in the school, even though that less than half of 18-29 years old vote for president. When students graduate, the majority will continue to care, some even more than in high school, and carry that momentum to have a small say in who the president is. Feeley really expresses his enthusiasm for young kids to get involved, “I think really the group to reach out to is young people. Ways to do that is getting them active in school.” Feeley exclaims.
Our future depends on our generation.The large crowd of students without a doubt have opinions about certain political topics going on in our country and even in the world. Students are very passionate about politics and voting, and want their opinions to be heard. A career in politics is certainly in the future for some of our students.