Kids’ Political Power

by Elizabeth Strickland, age 12
Kids’ Political Power Elizabeth attends Cathedral St. John the Divine. She runs track and is an avid equestrian.

“Kids should be able to hold political power and have more responsibility than they do in the present day. “

 

Children over the age of twelve are more than capable of doing the things eighteen-year-olds can do. Kids have the same abilities as adults, and their power should not be limited by their age. Some kids are still in school and haven’t gotten their full education yet. However, the knowledge that they did learn is still fresh in their brain. Adora Svitak is a TED talker who gave an inspiring speech on what adults can learn from kids. Kids should be able to hold political power and have more responsibility than they do in the present day.

Children have great ideas and are intelligent enough to have their say on who should be in charge. The president is in charge of the kids too so they should be able to vote too.  Adora Svitak stated in her TED Talk that kids have great ideas and one of the things that that make them kids is their ability to dream. They dream of ending hunger, of no one being homeless, and of no more global warming. Kids, with their big imaginations, could end war if they had that power, and people are doubting them because of their age. That’s the difference between kids’ and adults’ imaginations. Adults think of great ideas and then start thinking “that’s impossible,” or “that costs too much.” The website Mashable lists some kids who did extraordinary things. Seventeen-year-old Nithin Tumma found more effective and less harmful cancer treatments. Fifteen-year-old Jack Andraka found a cheap way to detect pancreatic cancer in its earliest stages. Seventeen-year-old Marian Bechtel went to the White House with her mine-detecting device. These are intelligent children whose ideas go beyond adults’.

Adults may tolerate work better than kids do; however, kids have enough capacity to get the job done. I am a child, and I can sit eight hours on end doing work. I feel if I had the option to have political power, work wouldn’t be a problem for me. Adults may have a longer work capacity than kids do. Kids over twelve are able to get the job done as long as they have breaks. This isn’t an incapability of the kids, it’s just a quick obligation that some kids need. If you look at some of the kids doing their homework after school, they can sit down for hours straight flying through papers; this isn’t anything different from what an adult would do.

Children have leadership skills that adults may never have. Kids just come out of school and their leadership skills are so high from practicing and, well, leading their other students in school. In my school, teachers are constantly encouraging leading which makes it impossible to stand in the shadows. Some great leaders of the younger age are like Ruby Bridges and the thousands of children from the Children’s March who led segregation to an end. The parents of these children didn’t want them to go, didn’t want to march, and still, hundreds of thousands of kids from all over the state came and marched. Kids want to rule, they want to be the leaders of their generation. Adults aren’t letting them take the lead.

Kids are capable of being the next leaders of the world. They are intelligent, can work hard, and can be amazing leaders. Many kids in the world have taken on roles that are outstandingly courageous and get so much done. These kids would make great leaders if only they had the power to lead. Kids all over the world have made a difference.

 

 

  • Adora’s Ted talk

 

http://www.ted.com/talks/adora_svitak?language=en

 

  • Mashable

 

mashable.com/2012/11/30/inspirational-kids-2012/

 

2 Comments

  • Casey says:

    Some great thoughts here- when I was a kid I felt the same way- now, I’m not so sure, but I enjoyed reading your piece. There’s a saying ‘the only rights you get are the ones you fight for’. If kids wanted political power they could take it simply by organizing a coalition. Labor unions might be a good model to look at. Best of luck!

  • This is a great idea! I think if kids want political power they should start by forming a student union to bargain with the school administration, teachers, and the DOE for less and better homework, less testing, etc. They have a lot more in schools that people realize since all of the accolades that schools get come from high exam scores and graduation rates, which are the work of the students, not the teachers or administrators. By refusing to do homework or attend school en masse, they could exert a lot of pressure on schools to change.

    It is only a relatively recent thing historically that kids as old as 12 do not have political power and are in school. See this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KW8hfO6ysM

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