Young People’s Civic Engagement

Nowadays, some people believe that younger generations of Americans do not show sufficient civic engagement. I do not agree with this statement, as there have been numerous examples of young people’s active civic engagement in recent years. I believe that younger Americans influence current politics and society in ways that deserve more attention and credit. One example of this is a wave of active protests against racism and discriminating practices in society that the country experienced two years ago. The police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor have caused a large number of demonstrations against police injustice and cruelty, especially towards individuals of color. More than 10,000 protests were held across the country in 2020, with the majority of protesters being from 18 to 30 years old (Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project).

That same year, the number of young voters in the presidential election reached its record levels. More than a half of the overall turnout was voters aged 18 to 29 (Tyson et al.). Another issue that young generations of Americans show significant concern about is climate change. Studies have shown that almost 30% of Millennials and Generation Z made donations, participated in environmental volunteer projects, and have become more involved in social and environmental activism in general (Tyson et al.). Young activists are more often seen on social media, voicing their concerns about a variety of global issues.

Taken into account the facts presented above, I can state that the Harvard University report that found younger Americans less likely to be civically engaged does not seem credible to me. Young people are taking action to address many social, political, and environmental problems on both local and global scales. Therefore, their efforts deserve more credit and recognition, which will allow them to increase their opportunities to make changes.

Works Cited

Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project. “Demonstrations & Political Violence in America: New data for summer 2020.” ACLED, Web.

Tyson, Alec, et al. “Gen Z, Millennials Stand Out for Climate Change Activism, Social Media Engagement With Issue.” Pew Research Center Science & Society, Web.