November 4, 2018

Why Millennials matter

Sam Smith - The level of Millennial turnout this year is not only significant for this election. It will tell a lot about our future as well. Just ten years ago, Millennials were the smallest age group in the country.  Now they are in second place. Yet as recently as 2016 less than half of those under 30 voted, while some 70% of those over 60 did.

This is not to say that black, latino, and women turnout isn't important. But by mere numbers the biggest question is: will the Millennials assume their true role in the electorate? This won't just change elections; it will change our whole society as this age group discovers its real importance.

I know something about this because I am a member of the Silent Generation. The most active political organization in my college were the Young Republicans and their major activity was drinking. The civil rights movement was underway but had little effect on young whites of my age.

Yet within five years of my graduation the whole story had changed. Young whites, including one of my roommates, were down in Mississippi agitating for decency, I had started one of the first of eventaully 400 alternative journals of the Sixties and anti-Vietnam War protests had begun in earnest. America would never be he same.

If Millennials play a major role in this election, something similar could happen. Not just a change in a few seats in Congress but a change in America's history as well. 

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