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// At Fordham University

Who Is Really To Blame for Voter Apathy?

Apathy is an inevitable part of life.

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I have many reasonable excuses as to why I won’t be voting in the New York primaries on April 19th. The first excuse: there are other things I would rather be doing on my birthday. The second, and the most important: I just don’t care. I have been asked more than five times in the past two weeks who I’ll “be supporting,” and have responded with a variation of, “I don’t know, I live on the outskirts of modern society,” every single time. I admit, I use this phrase too often, but in this particular case it is a great example of the fact that voter apathy is very much alive.

As much fun as it is to blame the government for all our problems, the bureaucrats are not completely responsible. It is more society and it's beliefs that everyone’s opinion matters that has caused this phenomenon. There are roughly seven months before the November elections and it’s now official, there is nowhere left to hide. It is impossible to turn on the television without seeing coverage of the presidential candidates. Even worse, it is impossible to check social media without being virtually suffocated with someone's political opinion. Remember how it’s said that one shouldn’t discuss politics at the dinner table? I’d like everyone to pretend that the world is their dinner table.

In essence, voting is something that should be valued. People have given their lives in order for us to be able to hypothetically take the fate of our country into our own hands, yet there is something about being practically smacked in the face by the opinions of ignorant, and often naive, “political activists” that makes voting so unappealing. Actually, it is also the fact that I am expected to have an opinion that makes me absolutely not want to have an opinion. Everywhere I turn there is someone saying that “this is right” and “that is wrong,” completely convinced that their word is bond. If these people would, at anytime, like to take a giant step down from their high horse, I’d be happy to explain that shoving political beliefs down someone’s throat can only backfire. Although the law deems us adults at 18 years old, we are essentially still children, and what happens when you tell a child they should do something? They do the exact opposite. Telling young voters that they are obligated to vote only results in increased voter apathy and a desire to go against social norms.

This being said, I do a very good job at avoiding all things related to politics. Though I frequently check social media and my mother insists on playing NPR every morning, I have managed to absorb very little about the upcoming election. This is what I do know: Donald Trump is a bigot, Hillary Clinton is inconsistent, Bernie Sanders is a socialist and Ted Cruz, well, Ted Cruz is the Zodiac Killer.
apathetically existing in NYC

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