With such a close vote and so many unknown factors in play, it has been fascinating to see the reactions on social media and in traditional media formats.
Many young people are upset with the results, saying that the older generation is tampering with the lives of future generations. But, by looking at voter turnout statistics, it’s easy to prove why voter turnout is very important in ensuring the desired democratic result is achieved.
I took the liberty of looking over various statistics on the Financial Times website and saw some interesting points of focus.
Generally, turnout increased by age. Areas in the United Kingdom with younger populations, had a lower turnout than populations with a higher average age. Interestingly enough, university towns such as Oxford and Cambridge had high turnout relative to age, while the city of Glasgow had a small turnout for a city that has a lot of youth.
The fact remains, if turnout had been higher by the younger generation, it’s influence would have been much greater, regardless of whether it was for the ‘Leave’ or ‘Remain’ side. The older generation have been through these things before. I believe they have learned from years of voting, that if you want something done, there is no other way to see your desired result if you do not show up at the polls.
These are the sort of issues I have been touching on within my column. Young people desperately need to be more involved with politics and the world around them. We cannot just sit around and expect things to happen. This is why democracy exists, but it cannot work if your vote is not counted. There is a process. Change is possible, but only when you participate.
The vote to leave the European Union is a complicated one, with many factors at play. It will be years until we know whether the U.K. is better off on their own. Both sides have very compelling arguments.
Sometimes, it seems like no matter what happens, nothing will change. This was not one of those times.