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"Use your youth": You are an opportunity for democracy

2019-08-23T09:47:11.605Z

Many young people can not do anything with parties. That does not mean that they are politically disgruntled - on the contrary. An excerpt from the book "Use your youth"



Many young people can not do anything with parties. That does not mean that they are politically disgruntled - on the contrary. An excerpt from the book "Use your youth"

The first choice is a first time like any other. And like all the first times, the first time kissing, drinking alcohol, falling or sex, the first Malmo dialing also wants to be well prepared. There are parents, schools, friends, older acquaintances, so the voting society, but also the media and of course the politicians and parties themselves asked. So that, as a first-time voter, you are so well-prepared that you can make the right decision for yourself in the moment that matters. Which does not mean that one does not regret or even question this first time at some point.

In any case, during my studies, I did not tell anyone whom I voted for in 2005, my first election. I had just moved from the Lower Saxon village to Berlin and moved there at the Free University in a more left-green environment. Right on the first day, we got a campus tour from an AStA member that met every cliché from an AStA member, a long-haired long-time student wearing an Antifa sweater, outwardly sleepy but politically rock-solid on the left, which is why he's the tot-of-Simson road So the street that leads directly to the main building of the FUentlang and the thousands of students every day up and down to the subway, the seminar, the lecture, the canteen and back running, absolutely wanted to rename in Rudi Dutschke Street. Dutschke, the spokesman of the German68, had studied sociology since 1961 at the FU. Many of his students at the Berlin FU in 2006 still felt themselves surrounded by his spirit. The social sciences and humanities in particular, including my institute, cultivated the semantic legacy of the student movement of the sixties and seventies, albeit critical of the political radicalization of some.

As it turned out over the years, I felt much more at home in the political climate university than at the parties of the Junge Union on which I had drifted in my youth. Nevertheless, my choice fell one year earlier, right at the beginning of my last school year, to Angela Merkel. Not necessarily, because my parents also chose CDU, but because I found Gerhard Schroeder unbearable. It was more a choice against him and his TypMacho politician than for Merkel as a woman or for her agenda. But I make the same choice as my parents. That on average every second electorate decides in favor of the same party as his / her parents, Hans Peter Kuhn, a professor of empirical education research at the University of Kassel, found out in a study at the end of the nineties. In an interview with ZEIT Campus in September 2017, he described that the state of research on this topic has not changed since then. The political attitude of the parents still has a great influence on the election of first-time voters. So probably also Leo (a participant of a demo-workshop, which I had met at a Fachoberschule in Munich in the election year 2017) like his parents, although the program of the CSU in the course of our common workshop day actually had shown as inappropriate, because it in matters of asylum, social and climate policy explicitly against his interests. If he ever went to vote.

"The youth of today is not disgruntled with politics.

The decency of youth has a long tradition in Germany. Since the second election after the war, since 1953, the Federal Statistical Office has collected representative election statistics by age and gender. And since then, the under-30s are consistently least likely to vote for everyone. 31.5 percent of the under-30s remained at home in 2017 - almost three million young people. But the laziest of the lazy are the 21- to 24-year-olds, as well as those who are just in the first phase of their new adult life. With only 67 percent in 2017, they were the least likely to vote. Thus, more than ten times as many senior citizens have fought in the electoral booth as students with smartphones. The fact that this is changing shows the results of the European elections. The turnout was at 61.4 percent as high as since 1994 is no longer. And throughout Germany, the newspapers headline the next day "The New Power of Youth" or "Youth Demands", because voters under 30 had influenced above all the good result of the Greens, who in Germany came to 20.5 percent of the vote. For both voters under the age of 25, the Greens reached 34 percent and became the strongest force in all age groups under the age of 44.

The youth of today are not morally displeased with politics. She is party-disgruntled. All recent large-scale youth studies, such as the Shell Youth Study or the Sinus Study, have found that today's youth are not only pragmatic and dutiful, family-oriented and optimistic, but above all that they are becoming politicized in comparison to previous generations. Just not in the direction of the parties and demetablierten policy operation, but in contrast to what is commonly understood as "the policy".

According to the 2015 Shell study, only three to four percent of adolescents have experience in political organizations. On the one hand, this has to do with the complexity of the parties, which often has a shocking effect on young people. However, it is probably also related to the fact that such a policy for adolescents is a synonym for non-transparency and Taktierereidarstelle, as the Sinus study put it. Thus, young people not only face demetablierten operation largely dispassionate, but bored by politics and politicians they downright. The parties are also less well-placed than average.

The majority of young people are not interested in politics in the form of party days, press conferences and election campaigns. In most cases, these events and messages barely reach them: almost two-thirds of them are unaware of the political operation. This is a disaster for the parties and their staff. Because it is not a rejection of the political in itself, but a rejection of the way in which politics is made by parties.

Source: zeit

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