On November 4, 2008 I, along with a predicted record number of young voters, will flock to my local polling place to cast my vote for the next president of the United States. This alone should be enough to make each of the candidates want to do all that they can in order to secure the youth vote.
But the reality is, after Senator Obama's many victories in primaries across the country secured him all of the delegates he needed in order to win the Democratic Party's nomination, he left the young voters who helped him secure the nomination behind. In Senator Obama, young voters see a smart, charismatic man who seems to have not yet been corrupted by Washington politics. But these attributes only go so far, and when it comes down to it, Senator Obama has not yet made addressing the issues which are directly affecting America's youth, a top priority in his campaign.
Senator McCain hasn't done any better. Much of his campaign agenda revolves around his belief that the United States must continue fighting duel wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and yet he has done little to woo the young voters who are being sent to fight on the front lines in the War on Terror.
My generation is often accused of being politically apathetic. But in this day and age when young people are struggling to afford their college tuition, watching their friends go off to fight in the Middle East and hearing that the effects of global warming will drastically change the environment as we know it, apathy, like those ugly Crocs sandals, is out.
True, there are many young Americans who will vote for Senator McCain because Heidi Montag, one of the stars of MTV's mega-hit show "The Hills," recently went out to lunch with McCain's daughter and has said publicly that she will be voting for McCain because she likes that he has "a lot of experience." And there are those young voters who decided that Senator Obama was the right candidate for them after they saw the star-studded YouTube music video of celebrities like actress Kate Walsh and Black Eyed Peas member Will.i.am singing along to one of the Senator's speeches.
But even MTV has revamped its coverage of the upcoming election by agreeing, for the first time in its twenty-seven year history, to air political ads in order to help America's young people decide who deserves their vote on Election Day.
My generation is ready to rock the vote in November. We want someone who will listen to our concerns, take us seriously and act now to make our future brighter. Young America is speaking. Now it is time for the candidates to listen.