The Swamp logo

Sanitizing Our Politics: People Over 60 Should Not Vote!

by Robert Gitau about a month ago in voting

I know this argument will ruffle many feathers, but it is a fact that there should be an upper age limit on voting!

Lydia, 102, casts her vote in the 2017 Kenyan general election on Aug. 8, 2017.

In terms of percentages, senior citizens are more committed to voting than youthful citizens. The main reason for this is because old people feel attached to their neighborhoods and country due to their long (mostly permanent) duration of residence. They are true patriots- we have to give them that! But besides wanting “what is best” for the country and humanity as a whole, most old people are also less educated, mentally unstable, and completely out of touch with the modern and future worlds. Their political views are mostly idiosyncratic and their take on morality is totally offensive to younger, productive generations. We cannot trust people who don’t exactly understand the social context of the modern world to decide “what is best” for us.

Voting Doesn’t Have To Be an Inalienable Right

Politicians make us believe that voting is a fundamental right. Is it though? I have my reservations. But even if it is, there are many should-be inalienable rights that governments and the ruling elite consistently disenfranchise the common citizen. Most old people especially in the 3rd and developing worlds are poor, disabled, sick, illiterate, and homeless. They are as vulnerable as they come. And what do politicians do to protect them? Nothing! Voting is not a matter of life and death for our grandpas and grandmas but hunger and disease is. Protect them first with better healthcare plans and social security before waking them up at dawn to go vote!

Angry and Conservative Old People

Their health is failing, they feel neglected, and nothing seems to work for them these days. That makes old people angry and frustrated by the modern world. They feel like the ongoing social and cultural changes have affected their cultural and economic fortune. They are nostalgic and wistful for their youthful years, so they will vote for anyone who promises to restore order and bring back the good memories. Such voters cannot be rational.

Many aging Americans, for example, voted for Donald Trump because he promised to make America “great again”. Great in that case meant when things felt easier, made sense, and seemed to hold together, regardless of whether or not they were practically great. But the world is now more interconnected, technology is here with us, and environmental changes have a deeper impact on the world. The “great” world that old people want to go back to simply doesn’t exist. It is a mythic past that’s bad for humanity.

Old People Just Can’t Understand Today’s Problems!

The issues people go to the ballot to vote for/against are alien to the older generation. The world doesn’t need conservative and rigid views on issues such as LGBTQ rights, abortion, racism, classism, universal healthcare, and climate change. Other examples of modern issues that many old people don’t understand (things that don’t affect them directly) include unemployment and employment laws, technology, taxation, and education. How can they hold politicians to account on matters of data security and privacy, for example, when they don’t even own smartphones?

Bottom line: Society is quite different now, and we need to accept and accommodate a broader and more diverse spectrum of people. Older people are resistant to these new realities, so it is best that they don’t vote in elections where such realities dominate.

The Mess We Are In Is A Creation Of Old People!

People over 60 years have had a whole lifetime of influencing politics and the world around them. They have voted in multiple elections already. If the system is broken, if our government is corrupt, if things are not working, it is because these old people voted for the wrong people over and over. We cannot trust them to vote for change!

No One Should Vote For More Than 5 Elections

Some people argue that denying old people the right to vote is tantamount to silencing them. But that is a tired argument if you ask me. Older voters influenced the political discourse for decades, even before most millennials were born. They had their turn, they were heard, now they should exit the discussion so that other people can be heard too. And it is not like today’s youngsters will be young forever- they too will exit the stage at some point. As a matter of fact, no voter should be allowed to vote in more than 5 elections; to mess up the world for more than 5 times.

Finally

On top of limiting voting based on age, it is compelling that we limit the age of who can run for public office. Most leaders over 60 years are rigid in opinion, physically unfit, and mentally drained. Most of them have been leaders for decades and have not done much for their constituents. Besides, most professionals retire at 60, so there is no point in hiring retirees to champion the change that we need.

voting
Robert Gitau
Robert Gitau
Read next: New Mexico—It's like a State, like All the Others!
Robert Gitau
See all posts by Robert Gitau

Find us on socal media

Miscellaneous links