Essay Lowering the Voting Age

1745 Words Mar 13th, 2012 7 Pages
Voting Age Matthew Clayton states in an article that “...Having the right to vote is widely recognized as one of the most important legal rights within a democracy.” (Wing and Clayton 534) With suffrage being an imperative democratic right, the questions of whether there should be a minimum voting age and if so, what age that should be set have quickly become central political issues. In 1971, the United States ratified the 26th Amendment to the Constitution, eliminating the age standard of twenty-one and granting eighteen year olds the right to vote. This was due to the realization of the double standard that eighteen year olds were old enough to be sent to fight for their country, but not old enough to vote for the people who …show more content…
These teenagers fund the government with billions of dollars each and every year, however, they have absolutely no say in where the money goes, how the money is spent, or how much can be taken as they do not have the suffrage rights to elect whom they feel represents them. This issue of taxation without representation has been seen as a catalyst for various movements throughout history and has even been described as, tyranny as the government is taxing citizens without giving them a voice. Some may argue that people under the age of eighteen are too young to vote for several different reasons. Apart from the fact that most are not employed or lack an understanding of taxes, they are not as well informed as the adult population, are less likely to vote as they do not care and, if they do, are more easily manipulated by government or citizenship classes that laughably attempt to make students better informed about their government. However, Tak Wing Chan and Matthew Clayton states that:
Some argue that if the enjoyment of voting rights ought to vary with political maturity, then society should exclude individuals from the franchise on the basis of competence rather than age (Harris, 1982). An age-based franchise, it is said, arbitrarily discriminates against young people who possess the capacities, motivation and understanding that are relevant to the act of voting to a higher degree than some older people do. (Wing and Clayton 539)
It is clear that even some

Related Documents