Time for change, lower the voting age to 16.

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The stereotype for a 16-year-old is a lazy self obsessed idiot who is too immature to make important decisions as the brain hasn’t fully developed. But is this the case? I beg to differ, “why?” you say? Let me show you. I wish to express that 16-year-olds are competent and engaged in the future. This is why I believe that they should have the right to vote, it’s time for change, it’s time for a free democracy.

But what is there to dispute? Teens aren’t exactly renowned for being the most sensible of people! But is this a fair judgement? After all not all teens are bad, not all teens want to rebel against societal ideals. Most people believe the teens are not capable to handle responsibility but I thoroughly believe that this is not the case, not all teenagers are like this, I believe this stereotype is built by the multiple of biases that are natural for humans to exhibit.

Cognitive bias, what does that sound like to you? An odd phenomenon, something that is rare and that you obviously do not suffer from? No, it’s something that we all suffer from, it’s part of a how our minds work. Cognitive bias is when we try to make sense of situations when there is a limited information, it’s when you think “ That’s logical, that makes sense “ but what is really happening is that you are thinking something along the lines of ‘according to my cognitive bias, it fits!’ An example of this is the connection of autism and vaccines. Symptoms show up at at the ages of 1 to 3. This is when lots vaccinations are given. As there is no precise reason for autism, people create the best link as possible. We assume that something must of made such events occur,Right? But this Is where another bias kicks in, the negativity bias.This is where we naturally focus on what went wrong,an example of this would be when your car stopped working, you would think what went wrong? Why did it breakdown? But you never think what went right and of all the times it’s working perfectly for you? If it’s a 15-year-old car why aren’t you as surprised that it worked as you are when it goes wrong,this is a prime example of the negativity bias, is it where you focus on the negatives more than the positives, after all in the past negative consequences could mean death so would make sense if evolutionarily to weigh more than a positive consequence such as food reward.

This is why in my opinion, many people think the worst of teenagers, they think the worst of all 16 year olds, why they see them as the stereotype they have built for them. The stereotype of a teenager, of a 16 year old that fits the cognitive bias that is made through from the bad choices of a select few and the bias of negativity. There is a psychological reason why the stereotype is the thing, but that does not make it fair, does not make it just. I believe that it’s time to show that 16-year-olds are engaged, engaged in the future, and we will prove it to them. If we sign a petition to look government, it’ll not only show support, it’ll prove to them that the must be some who are engaged in the future. How do you say? For the very act of signing the petition. If 16-year-old signed a petitionThen they have proved they want a vote. And a vote shows engagement, shows a desire to make change that will affect them.In America they thought 18 year olds weren’t capable of handling responsibility, in 1918 women gain the right to vote after thinking they couldn’t handle responsibility, isn’t it time that we make history we move forward to a better road where the next generation get a say in their lives. After all before 1918 they thought it was a mad that women would to be able to vote, but now we think it is mad that they weren’t able to vote, the same can be said for the vote for 16-year-olds.

According to the law 16-year-olds are able to consent to sex, consent to raising the child, consent to carry the burden of raising the next generation. But the law also says that they are not mature enough, responsible enough or adult enough to vote. Does that mean that raising a child requires no responsibility, no maturity. Many people would say that you need to be more mature and more responsible when raising a child than voting as they are bringing life itself to the Earth and committing themselves and society to support their child. If we can consider a 16-year-old mature enough to consent to sex we should allow them a vote after all do you think it is fair that parents don’t get to have a say in their child’s future let alone their own? So sign the petition, give the future generation their say and make history... together! Thank you.



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