Political Engagement Critical for Campus Teens


Mia Jay, Staff Writer

While too many teens view politics as the purview of adults, issues like abortion, gun control, racial equality, and the driving age are highly deserving of every high school student’s attention.

Lamorinda teens in particular have the tools to make a difference, not the least of which are top tier educations and financial wealth. Many people in Moraga are socially and financially privileged. Students should be leveraging these advantages to make positive changes in their communities and their country by engaging in the political process.

Unfortunately, Moraga can feel isolated, detached from the real world and real issues. It is easy to forget that teens in this community face challenge too. The debate over abortion is just one of many critically relevant to teens that remains “under the radar” and often avoided rather than confronted.

Teenage girls across the country are at risk of becoming pregnant, and while girls’ at Campolindo may, relative to the national average, enjoy an environment with resources and support that make them less likely to suffer an unplanned pregnancy, they are certainly not entirely immune.

Thus, there is good reason for students on this campus to be involved in debate over issues like abortion.

The Women’s March, the March For Our Lives, and other rallies are good options for students looking for gateways into the political fray. They are peaceful, fairly easy to attend, and offer opportunity to connect with other politically active teens.

Ultimately, this connection with politics will carry over to increased participation in the democratic process, most notably in an increase in voter turnout.

Far too many American adults do not vote.  It is far more likely that someone will cast a vote when they are connected to the political process at a young age.

Thanks to a recent crusade initiated by a small group of Campolindo students, over 300 students were registered to vote this past fall.

Those who are not yet of voting age can spread the word about different causes, participate in rallies and marches, volunteer their time, and, perhaps most importantly, learn about politics and controversial issues so that, when the time comes, they can exercise their right to vote based upon an informed opinion.

Rather than continue to hide in the seeming comfort of ignorance and detachment, Lamorinda students must break out of the bubble of political inaction and leverage their resources to join and make a difference in the fight.