View Full Version : Raise the Voting Age?

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009, 01:18 PM
Some users have debated that the voting age should be lowered (http://forums.skadi.net/showthread.php?t=97052). What about the other way around?

A map of voting age worldwide:


Voting age:
light blue -19
dark blue-20

At present most countries agree on 18. But do you believe that is an appropriate age, especially nowadays? Do 18 year olds really have the capacity to influence decisions for their country's future? What would happen if it were 21 or higher?

I believe the voting age should be raised to 21 years old. I am not convinced most 18 year olds are mature enough to vote.

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009, 02:14 PM
I agree, but I could also imagine giving suffrage to young people after they finished their national service (be it military or civil). This would indeed imply widening national service to women also, as well as excluding people who are unable to fulfill either civil or military service.

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009, 02:29 PM
Assuming most leave high school at the age of 18, I think 21 is a good minimum voting age. A high school graduate who thereafter attends university may come into contact with "heretical" ideas and more diversity of opinion than before (if he associates with the right circles), and those who immediately start working will have three years of experiencing the "real world" before being able to vote. In both cases, it gives the voter some time to extend his horison of thought beyond the ideas and opinions he was force-fed during school.

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009, 02:53 PM
If anyone wishes to discuss basing voting on economics or social class, please view this thread, Class and Voting (http://forums.skadi.net/showthread.php?t=110818). I would like mine to remain centered around age.

Thank you.

Edit: Thank you to whoever split the thread.

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009, 03:50 PM
I would be in favor of raising the voting age to at least 21, and possibly higher still. If you had asked me this question back when I was 15 or 16 years old I would probably have supported lowering it to 16 as I thought I was mature enough to vote at the time, which in hindsight I can see was folly. A person still has alot of growing up to do when he is 16-17 or even 18 years old, but this insight is something that comes with age and for a politically interested 16 year old who thinks he or she knows everything, it can be hard to accept the fact that he or she isn't fully developed as a person yet.

It is also a good prinicple to let those who have lived longer have greater influence in society-matters as a way of ensuring a slower pace of change as the older generation, in theory, acts as a portal between the past and the present, giving those who lived before us a say on things even after they themselves are gone from this earth. Society needs to governed by tradition and the accumulated experience and wisdom of past generations.

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009, 10:57 PM
I think age has limited relevance to maturity. The ability to vote should not rely on age but perhaps should rely on passing a standardized test? The fact is that age is such an unreliable measure of maturity that it shouldn't be used as a voting restriction.

Everyone on this forum knows at least a few people over 30 who should not be allowed to vote, and most of us know at least one person under 21 who should be allowed to vote. When you take every member of this forum and combined their experience with "exceptions", you will realize that it is far too high of a percentage of people who do not fit in the maturity range associated with their age.