Tired of all the election buzz at Menlo? Think again. Photo: Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/Tribune News Service.
By Ellie Lieberman
During these past two days after Donald J. Trump won the Presidential Election, countless teachers have defiantly declared, “Let’s not talk about the election during this class.” Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for America to move on, and I understand that we can’t keep dwelling on the results of Nov. 8.
But I will not stop talking about the election. Voter turnout in America is still embarrassingly low at 56.2 percent, and that’s mostly because the young people didn’t vote. But our country prides itself on “socializing the youth,” so that we want to become involved in politics throughout our lives. So, really, shouldn’t we celebrate the spontaneous political involvement of the youth following this election?
Regardless of your political view, this election has sparked interest in many youths. There have been countless youth-centric posts on social media and high school student-led rallies, like the protest that occurred on Nov. 10 in Berkeley. Finally, youth are taking an interest in government, so why shut us down?
America, simply put, needs more people running for office. We suffered from two of the most unlikable candidates this election. “Clinton now has a 56 percent unfavorability rating, while Trump had 63 percent,” making them some of the most unfavorable candidates ever, according to USA Today. Neither party was satisfied with their choices because there simply weren’t enough quality choices. To overcome the lack of interest in running for office, we need to encourage young people that they have a place in government and at the very least, a role in discussion.
Today, students will have the choice to leave their A block classes in favor of a walk-out, organized by juniors Ariana Carranza, Julissa Torres and Jojo Bachechi-Clark. The hope is for all students, regardless of political view, to have the opportunity to show respect for the groups targeted in this election. This election has truly served as a wake-up call to youth everywhere that politics is yearning for their involvement. Finally, America has the chance to overcome low voter turnout from millennials, so in my mind, now is a time to celebrate, not prevent youth from getting involved in politics.