Be the Change You Wish to See

jdutton2.jpgWalking through the halls of Skyline High School is a true experience during an election year. Interspersed with the usual talk about clothes, boyfriends, and homework (that can be expected of any typical high school) is buzz about Obama winning another state, and whether Hillary can make a “comeback.”

It has been seen in recent elections that the youth are not a demographic to be overlooked. Just noticing my fellow students and observing their level of awareness is enough to make me truly believe this. Many high schoolers will turn eighteen before November, and some are eligible voters already. In fact I had several classmates vote in the California Primary and many more who plan to vote in the General Election. Even my sister, who will not be living in the United States during the election plans on sending in an absentee ballot.

So my question is this, what is it about the 2008 Presidential Election that is causing such a spark in interest? I have heard many theories answering this question, and I am very curious to see what parents, teachers, and students think. Probably the most interesting theory I have heard is that with the ongoing Writer’s Strike in Hollywood, the election has replaced T.V. shows as a major source of entertainment. In a sense, I could say this is probably true, at least for many teens.

Another, and perhaps more valid, theory is that this election is shaping up to be the most radical in this nation’s history to date and the youth are eager to be a part of it. It is a very real possibility that the the people of the United States will elect their first woman president or their first African-American president, and as a teenager growing up in this time of change, I for one am unbelievably excited.


  • Isabel Rodriguez-Vega

    I know what you mean. A lot more students, or at least the students I have talked to, have been very interested and informed about the elections and politics in general. It has been one of the main topics of conversation recently and I think its great! Maybe its just because we are all finally at the voting age, or close to it, and therefore are more politically aware. But I too think it has something to do with the different variety of candidates and the possibility of “change.”

  • Sue

    I hear echoes of my junior year of high school in both your words, Jesse and Isabel.

    Nixon had resigned and Ford had pardoned him. The country was deeply hurt by the corruption and disgrace of the Presidency. My peers were very aware of the need for change, and I, along with many others, would have voted for Jimmy Carter, but I was six months too young.

    Today, we again have corruption in the Federal government, and we have a deeply hurt and divided country in need of change. I only hope that the next President will be more effective and successful than President Carter was.

  • former student

    A part of me cannot help but see the heightened interest as a sort-of fad – not that it’s a bad thing.

  • Ryan Barnes

    I completely agree. The primary reason why people know so much about the 2008 presidential elections is because they want change. They are extremely tired with the inefficiency of the current administration. I myself am one of these people. It seems that as we go on in time, and as the US government gets older, our nation is getting more and more corrupt. We still live in a society that harbors so much hate and wickedness, yet we have the nerve to claim that this nation is civilized and advanced. So many people hate people because of mere differences. It’s disgusting. AND, Our government has done NOTHiNG to remedy this very serious source of division within our nation. The executive branch in particular does not show concern for this at all. This shows us (well it shows me, at least) that if the government cannot fix this problem, then how can it efficiently fix other problems? You see, this is why we want change. America has grown tired of the monotony. The 2008 election gives us yet another chance at reform and, hopefully, a better America.

  • Juliana Jones

    It is great to see you sharing your views like this. Go to the Montera website and email me. I would love to hear about colleges, your life and how Skyline has been for you. Say hi to your sister, too!
    Ms. Jones

  • Jesse Dutton-Kenny

    Great to hear from all of you