Students possess great political influence regardless of age

Lydia Flores, Assistant Editor

Some not-so-fun facts for daily enlightenment: the UN reports that 42% of African school children will never enter into further education, 3 million malnourished children starve to death every single year, and the World Wildlife Fund reports that 1.1 billion people can’t access drinkable water.

Yet these statistics are simply numbers, utterly lacking emotional depth or any human element. That homeless women on the corner of West Temple is merely one of millions that finds themselves homeless in the land of the free. That bombing that happened across the world is simply another headline that reports a tragic circumstance US citizens are immune to.

“My mom doesn’t tell me anything,” said sophomore, Jessica Johnson (real name withheld)  “I know she should. My parents don’t really educated me, but it doesn’t involve me. I mean, it involves me, but I don’t have to know. Maybe I’m just too young.”

While there exist an abundance of Tville students who feel hopelessly uneducated regarding the country’s politics, a profuse amount of students actively engage themselves in their community.

One way students are getting involved is by participating in the Taylorsville City Youth Council. This student-led council works in connection with city council and offer the teenage perspectives on local political issues.

High school senior, Cheyanne Bradshaw, has been a member of Taylorsville’s youth council for the past three years and has recently began service as Youth Council Mayor and as  an ambassador for Youth Council. With these new leadership positions she becomes  increasingly active in community matters by leading youth council meetings and by attending events like ribbon cuttings.

She said, “Youth council is a great opportunity to get to learn about local government and you get to serve the other people throughout the community. We’ve gone shopping for families’ Thanksgiving Dinners that they couldn’t afford and, we’ve done sub for santas.”

Other students get involved by volunteering with causes they are passionate about. Clubs within the school, such as HOPE squad, Latinos in Action, and JROTC all possess an element of community service that allows teens to contribute to the society they live in.

Ana Zamora, a junior at the school, currently serves as the President for Latinos in Action and frequently engages in peer tutoring at elementary schools. She said, “I love to help others and provide for others; it makes me feel good.”

Social media also unlocks doors to political discussion and political awareness. By following legitimate news sources such as BBC News, Deseret News, and the Salt Lake Tribune, students can access current events that range from local affairs to global communications.

Hence, despite the teens that lack political enthusiasm, the abundance that do involve themselves in the community possess an influence that cannot be matched. Bradshaw said, “I think there are a lot of kids that are really smart and dedicated. [I think] that they’re going to be the future leaders.”