It is a widely recognized fact that youth are more and more disengaged, in general, by politics. The electoral results at all levels over the past years show this. However, at the same time it is expected that these youth, and children, will have acute social consciousnesses when they grow up.
How can this be? If they are to have acute social consciousnesses, it follows that they will be passionate about issues of social justice and the like. But, how channel that passion if you don't believe in the power of government to change things, and hence in participation in the political system?
The answer seems to be that youth don't see a disconnect, they don't see the glaring inconsistency. Why? Because of the pernicious mantra that can be applied to every problem: "if we all do our part, we can change the world".
At face value, this would seem to be fine. However, it all hinges on what you define as "your part".
Let's consider climate change. Our part seems limited to buying a more fuel efficient car, turning off lights, recycling etc... Nowhere is there any mention that the political process may be helpful.
Instead it's change the world through the little things. Instead it's politics is a bunch of broken promises and ineffective at best in bringing about change.
Yet these things cannot and will never bring about the desired change. My generation stands to be frustrated by its combination of a distrust and dislike of politics and sincere hopes of changing the world. That is if it doesn't change.
How can I say it won't bring about the desired change? First, some issues are too big for everyone to do their part. What's more, not everyone wants to do their part.
Secondly, working through charities and such does not have the advantages of government. A government can tax, a government can negotiate with multiple partners, a government has money for studies. Granted charities are powerful, but there is no way that they have the ability to implement solutions.
Charities cannot be the implementers of national policy. Only government can. And, consequentially, the political process must play a part.
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