Keltz wrote:...I doubt there was too much interest in leaving the EU 5 years ago but now everyone has an opinion on it. Young people are much more free thinking and should be encouraged to have their say.
Before Cameron decided to hold a referendum the EU never appeared in the top ten issues concerning people in polls. Immigration did always appear but it is a complex issue. When talking about immigration people conflate many different issues under a single label, e.g. legal immigration from the EU, legal immigration from non-EU countries and illegal immigration/asylum seeking/refugees. The concerns themselves are also quite varied and often misunderstood, e.g. benefits, housing, schooling, healthcare, suppression of wages, different cultures and simple fear of the "different". A significant part of the population hold beliefs on these issues that are demonstrably factually wrong but the views persist, are encouraged by politicians where they fit their agenda and influence voting patterns.
"The young" are a very disparate group of people. Here I am talking about people under 18. Some are "free thinking" while some don't think at all and some are very easily persuaded by the thoughts of others. Some are very engaged with politics but I suspect the majority are not. It wouldn't surprise me if those in public schools and grammar schools are more engaged than those in a sink school in a deprived area, although I have no figures to support that view. Most people in politics who favour reducing the voting age do so because they think they will gain some advantage from it while others who oppose it do so because they think they will lose some advantage. I am not sure there is a rational way to decide what the voting age should be. When I was young the majority of young people left school, started work at 16 and hence started paying taxes. On the principle of "no taxation without representation" you could argue that the voting age should have been 16 back then. While formally the school leaving age is still 16 there are a lot of rules that impose other conditions which mean that the majority no longer start work and paying taxes at 16. The rules also vary among the four countries of the union so changing to 16 on the taxation basis is not as clear cut.
The programmes listed by Kamisiana, Maud, basically consist of socially inadequate people allowing themselves to be forced to perform demeaning and degrading acts, in the hope of becoming celebrities, for the "entertainment" of other socially inadequate people, who gain pleasure from watching. A bit like the coliseum in ancient Rome except they don't normally get to die, apart from those who find it so demeaning and degrading that they kill themselves afterwards. Some programmes attempt to see how far they can push the barrier between what most people call acceptable behaviour and hard core pornography. Some involve Z list celebrities and has-beens trying to boost/regain their ratings. Many years ago I was "forced" to watch one of them every night for a week when I was staying with a relative who had to get their daily fix. I suppose I could have gone to bed early and read a book but it would have been rather churlish. To be fair some do involve people with talent but even there the entertainment value seems to come mainly from demeaning and degrading the ones that don't rather than appreciating the ones that do.