I was reading an article about how 16 year olds should be able to vote, it covered cold and hot cognitive thinking, and whether maturity should be based off of age. The age restriction for voting is 18, you can get a driver’s license at age 16, and you’re allowed to drink legally at age 21. In some ways, it’s reasonable to think that putting age restrictions on laws makes sense ,for example if you’re 21 years old you’ve already gone through puberty and development so it’s expected that you make reasonable choices based off the idea that your mind has matured, therefore you are allowed to drink alcohol because you’re probably mature enough to handle it. But what about the people who mature before or even after the age of 18, if there are younger people who are informed and have the ability to understand politics, then why aren’t they allowed to vote? This is why majority rule blows, there are always a minority and when the majority come to agree on one thing that are opposite to the minority, minorities stay minorities and they stay unheard.
Maybe it’s time to change who’s determined to be able to vote by measuring our comprehension and understanding of politics over age. Because as we know by now, age doesn’t signify maturity, especially since we all mature at different speeds. Hypothetically speaking, let’s say we’re pregnant and there’s a law going around about banning abortion and you’re 16, but you don’t agree with it and you’ve taken into consideration of how it’ll affect you and others. Even though you’ve formed an opinion and have come to an understanding of the topic, you’re still not aloud to vote meaning you’re not allowed to voice your opinion due to the arbitrary voting age restriction. In which it would suck to be 16 and pregnant without the ability to change how you handle the baby. However there are reasons as to why there are age limits, a good example would be movie ratings. If you are 18, you’re allowed to watch an R rated movie, the reason the majority of 12 year olds can’t watch it is because they may not be prepared for “mature” content, most can’t handle viewing something better than an adult would. The content can corrupt a child’s innocence and even the individual’s way of thinking because children are easily influenced, in which case, it would make sense to put an age restriction on media. Many don’t believe teenagers are capable of making decisions because teenagers have the reputation of being reckless, but they’re only focusing on the hot cognition. Hot cognition is when you base your thoughts off of emotions and the environment you’re in, while cold cognition deals with thoughts from an “emotionless” environment without feeling limited or timed. So when taking consideration into whether we should allow teenagers to vote, we have to realize that cold cognition is what takes place instead of hot cognitive thinking. People can complain about how teenagers can/will be biased when voting, but anyone can be biased at any age so this idea is out of question. Every generation has grown more advanced and we’ve exceeded what our ancestors would hope to achieve, so to say the least, the voting age is outdated and should fit so our generation can adapt.
“Don’t limit a child to your own learning, for he was born in another time.”