Commentary – Strike Back By Voting
As you know, if you are under 18, you do not have the right to vote in the United States of America. Though, our government forces you to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, this country is not guided by the statement, “in liberty and justice for all.” Instead, we are ruled by intolerant politicians who want to control all people and prefer to have complete control over those under 18.
Things could be worse. Imagine if you were never given the right to vote or if you could only vote for one dictator, like the Cubans who must vote for Castro. Fortunately, due to successful protests in the 1960s, 18, 19, and 20 year olds were given the right to vote and it is up to you to use that right.
We have a dream that one day, teenagers will look forward to their right to vote as they now look forward to their right to drive. On every teenager’s 18th birthday, we want he or she to go directly to the court house, register to vote, and then tell the local, intolerant mayor that his days are numbered.
Unfortunately, many teenagers, who finally get the right to vote, no longer think that those under 18 should have equal rights. During our curfew protests in San Diego (in the summer of 1997), we encountered many people who were in their low 20s yet they agreed with the curfew. They felt that since they had endured the humiliating law, everyone else should have to suffer through it. Or they were just brainwashed by the government’s propaganda, which says that teenagers should be home by dusk.
You must never forget what it is like to be harassed by the police because you were hanging out. Or what it is like to be stuck in the middle of suburbia without the right to drive. Or the feeling you get when everyone else is allowed into bars, but your best social option is at the multiplex. Life does not have to be less enjoyable for teenagers. When you turn 18, don’t forget about the teenagers who are harassed every night by the police. You will finally have the chance to change their lives.
When you turn 18, register to vote and turn this country into the land of the free. You can also act right now by joining Operation Register, a protest organized by YouthSpeak which is another organization that fights for youth rights. Operation Register has already staged protests across the country.
Feedback from a Libertarian Rock Visitor
Libertarian Rock forwarded YouthSpeak’s Operation Register announcement to our mailing list. Pasted below is a statement from one of our readers, which captures the injustice of our current voter laws.
“I have been encouraged by the response this message (the curfew protest) has had with fellow teenagers and we continue to fight this injust law! When you recently notified me about Operation Register, I reflected over this protest carefully. Age discrimination is wrong, and this protest brings the spotlight to this issue, but does is really fight it?
Media people show a group of teenagers walking up to city hall to register, they are rejected, they tell reporters of the injustice of such an action, and a week later everyone forgets about it. While this scenario may or may not happen, I believe more substantive action needs to supplement Operation Register!
The American revolution began partly because they had no representation in England’s parliament. England passed laws and taxes on the colonists without any input from them!!! The “minors” of America have laws and taxes passed on them without any input in the process. The cry of “No taxation, without representation” rang through the ears of colonists wishing to fight this injustice.
I propose the “minors” of America examine their check stubs. Why? If the government refuses to grant us the right to vote, why should we allow them to take out Social Security, Medicare, etc. from our hard earned money??? I propose refusing to pay these taxes if our suffrage rights are refused! Could we implement such a risky idea? It would involve great risk, but all revolutions do, and this one is no different. Let’s take a stand together and match our words with action!
Click here to contact Bryan, who lives in Dallas, TX.