The Youth Vote28.04.10
Aired on April 28, 2010
Narration by Baben Lumapas
THE YOUTH VOTE
The vote of the youth can potentially sway the pendulum and chart the future of this nation. It is estimated that more than half of the total 44 million Filipino voters will come from the youth sector.
But can there be such a thing as a youth vote?
Not likely, some say. The electoral system as it is now does not excite the imagination of our young people. Just as they clog their ears with blaring music in their iPods, so have they clogged their ears to what is happening around them.
Who can blame them?
First, they do not have the memories of how we fought for the right to vote.
Ask the youth about EDSA People Power 1 and much of their impression of that historical event is of a housewife becoming the country’s president. President Corazon Aquino stands out as an icon of the restoration of democracy. But beyond this, many of our youth do not even know what those of us who were there really fought for.
We were deprived of the right to vote during those 14 years under Martial Law until the snap elections of February 1986. But with national elections restored, we were back to the same old traditional politics. How, then, can we teach our youth to appreciate their right to vote and to treat this right as sacred?
On the other hand, since most young people are quite savvy with technology, it may be that it is their vote that will most count in an election that for the first time will use automation.
The huge turnout of young people during the People Power II in the early part of this decade may be a sign that there exists a generation that is much like those who turned out for the previous one. The visibility of young people who helped out during the disasters wrought by Ondoy and Pepeng last year also holds out the promise that they may yet surprise us in this election.
It is certainly our prayer that in an election as critical as this one, the upcoming generation will show up and remember both their country and Creator in these days of their youth.
Written by Ruby Ann Kagaoan Calo. She is a friend and writer of ISACC.