Politics is at the very foundation of everyday life. From pay wages to international travel, politics is the essence of freedom at home and abroad. As the 2016 Presidential election moves through its early stages, some students wonder how attentive their peers are toward this campaign.
Republican front-runner Donald Trump sent the country into a media frenzy with his mean tweets and obnoxious press conferences. His outlandish remarks on issues ranging from terrorism to immigration, along with his outrageous policies to x these issues is changing the game of politics. The media’s frenzy has in uenced potential voters by skewing their views toward the presidential campaign as a whole.
College students must juggle many responsibilities, so it is not uncommon that they forget to put politics on the top of their priorities list. Balancing studies and extracurricular activities is strenuous on the mind and some students don’t want to cloud their minds with politics.
“Students don’t pay attention to politics because they’re wrapped up in their studies and their social life,” senior, and government and politics major Ardra Landon said.
Oddly enough, they are not alone. Huf ngton Post reported that 74 percent of voters will not pay close attention to the Presidential campaign until the nal months leading up to when the polls open in November 2016.
“People pay attention to the immediate, not the future, so they don’t prioritize politics until its time to,” Landon added.
There has also been a shift in how younger generations tackle politics versus how their older counterparts do.
“We’ve lost sense of the autotomized world, we are much more of an individualistic world,” Nathaniel Richmond, professor of government and politics and interim department chair, said. “Some people blame the Internet, but I think the Internet allows many different platforms for people to learn more about politics in their own way.”
Many students are choosing their political party solely based on what the media is feeding them. Headlines highlighting the offensive remarks made by Trump lead voters to jump from candidate to candidate without knowing the facts about each candidate’s campaign, taking the position that any candidate is better than Trump. Other students are in uenced by the views of their families and peers, so they do not see the urgency in paying attention to politics.
“It’s hard to get people to learn about and pay attention to politics because they are so biased with that they were taught growing up that it is overwhelming for them to develop their own political views,” Angela Connor, a recent UC graduate with a degree in government and politics, said. “It is important to pay attention to politics because it affects our everyday life whether we realize it or not.”
There are easy ways that students can keep up with the 2016 Presidential campaign. Social media has helped spark conversation about many issues while propelling ordinary people into fame. Following social media accounts of news outlets like CNN and the Associated Press is a great and effective way to keep up with the campaign.
Many students need background noise to help them focus during study sessions. Keeping the television on channels that cover politics while studying is another great way to stay focused while subconsciously feeding the mind. Professor Richmond encourages students to take action and get involved in politics.
“Make sure the people that run things know your opinion,” he said.
Polls don’t open until November 2016, but keeping up to date with the campaign before the polls open is crucial in determining the future of this country.