Politics should be taught in school


ART BY ANNIE LIANG

Politics: It's all about who said what and why they said it.


Oftentimes, the subject becomes a little bit confusing. The average citizen usually understands two things - how to and who to vote for. Needless to say, no one really needs to understand politics to do both of these things, and sadly that fact has set the political climate for this country.


In life, few ever get deeply involved with politics; according to the journal article The History Teacher written by Wayne Journell, those who do rarely ever pass that knowledge down to younger generations. Most students despise the typical high school system, which focuses on hammering essential subjects such as language and math into students every day as a means to graduate.


Alternatively, there are also subjects such as science, business, and even culinary being taught at school. These are what helps the students explore and figure out who they want to be when they leave school. As such, why should high schools not include politics among these subjects? In turn, like many other subjects, students should have more opportunities to engage in politics at school. Sure there are some classes with political elements such as economics and civics, but there is nothing that allows students to directly involve or practice politics.


Are occupations involving politics not just as or even more important roles for people to have? Who is to say that the country would not benefit from more people being educated about politics? Now, of course, some people would argue that including politics in regular school education would be essentially the same as the indoctrination of the ideals of the government. That student would be forced to follow whatever bias is forced upon them by their educator. Nevertheless, if the whole is done well, with nonpartisan knowledge, knowledge of politics is largely beneficial to both growing leaders and teachers.


Additionally, not only will they be able to learn more about how their country functions, but students will be able to find out more about the responsibilities they will have as adults in the future. The inclusion of learning politics at institutions such as highs schools does not even have to be mandatory. Instead of creating a new course, adolescents can be exposed to the subject matter through clubs, school events or extracurricular organizations to the likes of the Junior States of America or even Mock Trial. This way, the subject of politics can be included within the school system without student complications. Those who want to learn about politics can and others who wish to opt-out have the option to do so. In other words, it is okay for students not to be interested in politics. That is natural, but at least give those who are interested an opportunity to learn.


Even with just knowing the fundamentals, the future generation will be able to make better decisions for the people of this country. As stated before, people do not need extensive knowledge to be involved with politics, they do however need at least the foundation to make wise and informed decisions. With more and more students being exposed to politics, undoubtedly more of the same students will grow up to be well-educated politicians.

Every other week or so there has been breaking news on debates and scandals happening with politicians. Whether it be over prescription drug price acts or personal speech attacks, one thing is clear: this country needs better leaders, it needs someone who is more competent and more reliable than the people today. America should start prioritizing quality and quantity when considering its voter population. As a result, it should be the responsibility of the newer generations to make better decisions in order to build a stronger and more united country.


Politics in school, however, can be very divisive leading to many discriminations and bullying of others with opposing viewpoints and opinions. As a scenario, imagine the 2016 election. On one side the people who supported a certain candidate would always cheer and applause when their candidate would show up on TV. Those that supported the other candidate would publicly make hate comments against the opposing candidate and discriminate against anyone who wore the colors that contrasted their candidate’s campaign. It is not that the people hated each other, it is just that their beliefs towards the candidacy differ greatly.


Furthermore, educators set an example for students and students are more likely to benefit from their example. By modeling the correct way to handle political disagreements, adolescents are able to further their own knowledge about the subject thus further eliminating any emotional or non-sensible biases. As such, even if they are biased, they will most likely at least be able to argue their bias with logical reasoning rather than just personal feelings. Politics dictates the world, the only fairness granted to the people is that of complete impartial logic. Part of understanding and learning politics is to differentiate between what makes sense and what does not, it is in this where most people struggle the most.


On the platforms of the media, people can make something they said sound completely logical and truthful, but in reality, it is the opposite. The line between logic and bias is often blurred in ethical debates, especially in politics where people might argue for the benefit of no one but themselves while trying to mask their own malicious intent by saying it is for the good of everyone.


Now is not the time to be bickering between who leads what country, but instead, society as a whole needs to improve upon themselves, not as brilliant leaders, but as an enlightened collective capable of catapulting the world into the distant future.