Though it seems like it’s been going all year, the 2012 presidential race officially began this week with the conclusion of the Democratic National Convention Thursday, Sept. 6. Buckle up, because we’re in for a bumpy ride. With record-high donation rates flooding the candidate’s coffers, you’ll be seeing more signs, ads and slogans than ever before. And as a young voter, it’s your job to pay attention to them. Most importantly, however, you must pay attention to the news.
As simple as that sounds, many young people in this country have trouble keeping up with the events of the day. People aged 18- to 34-years old consistently score lower on current-event polls than their elders. This election, however, is an opportunity to change that status quo.
Pay attention to the news throughout the election cycle so you can make an informed decision when you cast your ballot in November. Try picking up a free newspaper in Kennedy Union and browsing the national news. Turn on the TV in the evening to watch a nightly broadcast, or – the favorite of most college students – boot up your computer and read it online.
Don’t just listen to the same voices every day either – seek out the other side’s opinion whenever you can. If you spend an hour watching Fox News, spend another watching MSNBC. Go to a meeting of both the College Democrats and the College Republicans. Give that opinionated professor of yours a chance, and don’t be afraid to have a healthy debate with your roommates. You may find that you have more in common than you think.
How you decide to consume the news is up to you, but it’s important that you do so. This is an exciting time for our nation and our campus, and it’s your duty to participate.