I recently read an article on the voter registration rates in America among the younger population ranging from ages 18-29. I was immediately disappointed with the statistics in the article. I realized, however, that it was missing a key aspect. GenZ is ages 13-22. Approximately half of GenZ can’t vote yet.
The article touched on the impact of school shootings on GenZ and expressed surprise that the voter registration, especially in Parkland Florida, was nearly identical to the election year before. The thing is, if most of GenZ can’t vote, yet all of GenZ has been affected by the increase in school shootings in some way or another, then we, the GenZers and population as a whole who can vote, must consider their voices that demand change, we must consider their activism and we must vote with them in mind in November.the GenZers and population as a whole who can vote, must consider their voices that demand change, we must consider their activism and we must vote with them in mind in November. Click To Tweet
I talked to three GenZers who will be voting for the first time this November. They offer hope in terms of an increase in voter registration among young people, GenZ in particular.
“As soon as I turned 18, I registered to vote and just recently registered for my absentee ballot,” Thea Mills, 18 said. “For me there is no ‘if you vote.’ I will always vote any opportunity I have. It’s my obligation to make sure my values, which are shared by many, are upheld via the laws of this country.”
They too, used their voice in youth activism when they couldn’t use their vote to make change.
“I helped organize a school walkout last year in support of the victims of the school shooting down in Florida,” Arik Fick, 18 said. “This generation has the potential to change the political landscape. I see us thinking about topics with a more open mind than most of our parents, which will hopefully have the effect of making us more politically engaged.”This generation has the potential to change the political landscape Click To Tweet
Like Fick, Mills also participated in a student walk out to protest gun violence. This wasn’t her first experience with activism though.
“[It] was when Bush was president and people were protesting the wars and violence. I think I was 7. I remember making a peace sign and holding it on a stick walking around D.C. with my dad and his friend,” Mills said.I was 7. I remember making a peace sign and holding it on a stick walking around D.C. Click To Tweet
In a digital world within the most tech savvy generation to date, social media holds the power. GenZ uses its power to influence, to amplify and to advocate.My parents, friends, and social media influence me to vote. My own beliefs influence how I vote Click To Tweet
“My parents, friends, and social media influence me to vote. My own beliefs influence how I vote,” Sophia Campana, 18 said.
And when Taylor Swift posts a paragraph on Instagram for her 112 million followers to see, beginning her conclusion with “So many intelligent, thoughtful, self-possessed people have turned 18 in the past two years and now have the right and privilege to make their vote count,” GenZ is listening. With an influencer as influential as Taylor Swift getting the attention of mass amounts of GenZ, GenZers who can’t vote, look to those who can and make their voices loud and clear, their activism demanding and send the voters to the polls with their votes in mind.
Will you be voting this November? Let us know in the comments below!
Other posts you may like reading: GenZ Use of Smartphones in the Classroom: Different Perspectives
If you represent a brand, or media, or a teen yourself and would like to learn more about WeRGenZ and our original research with real teens CONTACT US: AskUs@WeRGenZ.com or call Kathleen Hessert at 704-906-3600