Whopping 50 percent of 18-to-24-year-olds voted in that 1972 election, according to American Demographics magazine. Voting was as cool as protesting wars in patchouli-scented scarves and drag-racing for pinks. But then something happened.
I am a 24-year-old teacher -- smack in the middle of America's "young generation" of 18-30-year-olds -- and I am troubled that half of my cohort -- my peers, my co-workers, my friends -- choose not to exercise their right to vote.
The voting power of young adults certainly exists; the issue has now just become a question of action. As a person who is both a youth voter and a college student, the non-empirically based answer seems quite easy: convenience.
Smart politicians know that the 2010 electorate is unlikely to repeat itself in 2012. Expect them to adjust their policies and rhetoric accordingly if they plan to be reelected to another term in office.