“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12
(For all you non-Southerners, the title of this post means young people. I’m going to snarkily write about the young people. I think we’re pretty great.)
“The fewer ignorant young people out voting, the better. They simply do not have enough life experience to make informed decisions.”
Some guy commented this on a newspaper article about the low voting turnout at a *student body president* election. (Yeah, because young people voting for the new young person to lead as their campus president just doesn’t make sense at all.) I’d like to be optimistic and say he is being sarcastic, but… Judging by his other posts, I’m gonna say he was totally serious.
So I’m totally going to argue.
So I’m old enough to fight in adult wars (started by your mature, adult generation). I’m old enough to buy tobacco products and slowly kill myself. I’m old enough to drive a powerful vehicle. I’m old enough to buy my own house. I’m old enough to go to college and choose a career. I’m old enough to be married and raise a child, ya know, an actual human. I’m old enough to go to jail (and thankfully also old enough to make smart choices to avoid jail).
But you’re right. I’m too young and inexperienced to make informed decisions. I should leave that up to the adults. Adults like you… Tolerant adults. Respectful adults. Kind adults. Smh I’m being so sarcastic. (Is this why you don’t like me?)
I’m old enough to experience losing family members, dealing with good breakups, dealing with messy breakups, and making terrible mistakes. I’m old enough to know what anxiety feels like and body image issues. I’m old enough to see how screwed up this world is and how everyone likes to turn against each other just because we’re different. I’m old enough to know it’s not fair that girls have to be scared to walk alone at night out of fear of being raped or assaulted. Guys too.
I’m old enough to study things about the world and form opinions about it. I’m old enough to wake up and read the newspaper with my morning coffee. I’m old enough to recognize racism, sexism, homophobia, and false accusations of these things in my everyday college life. I’m old enough to know politics are messing with my university system. Yes, older people (LIKE YOU, GOOD SIR) are trying to dictate and control my education with their own political agenda in mind. I’m old enough to feel enraged by this.
I’m old enough to feel enraged that people just a few decades (or even just years) older than me think they still know how the world works. Not to question your wisdom because, believe me, I look up to the older people in my life to teach me things. But you can learn things from young people too because the world is changing quickly every day. Like how to use an iPad. Or how to turn off caps lock when posting on Facebook. Or really important things like how we are stepping up in activism and trying to change the world. Ya know, silly young person things.
I’ve been to more countries than my parents. I am learning multiple languages. I have desires to live abroad and do inner-city ministry and stop the sex trade and work for the UN and go to law school and make a freaking difference. I’m a feminist and I’m a young Christian and I love loving people and I believe in equality for everyone. I have a lot going for me, I think, and so do all of my young friends. There are young people doing things you wouldn’t believe, but you’re only focusing on the articles about how lazy millennials are and how we have never had to work for anything in our lives.
I’m going to get off of my soap box now and I’m just going to tell you that you’re wrong. Because soon you’re not going to be able to be the man in charge and the young people you are insulting will be in charge of you.
P.S. – Thank you to every person above the age of 20 that reads my blog and allows me freedom to make choices. You are technically my elder and I think it’s amazing you take me seriously. I’m honored to have your company and wisdom in my life. Please keep teaching me. xoxoxox