Music and Politics

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In March of 1971 something amazing happened. The House of Representatives and Senate approved the 26th amendment, which lowered the voting age from 21 to 18 (Liptak 1). “Young people had begun to assert themselves politically during the civil rights movement in the early 1960s, taking part in demonstrations against racial segregation and poverty,” said Adam Liptak, a national legal correspondent for The New York Times. (Liptak 2) However, since then fewer members of today’s younger society are politically active, and there has been a decrease in voting among them. According to the University of Maryland’s Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement, 37 percent of voters between the ages of 18 and 24 cast a presidential ballot in 2000, down from 52 percent in 1972,” says Brook Corwin, a 2004 graduate of the University of North Carolina. (Corwin 3) In saying this, it seems that although the young voting has declined the young music listening has remained consistent. Because popular musicians have such a large fan base and a strong influential impact on their fans, they should openly promote and support political candidates as well as political causes. Popular musicians have an extremely large fan base among the younger members of society, which means they have the power to bring political awareness to a vast majority of the population. “When a musician lends his name to an effort, or issue or candidate, that’s going to bring more eyeballs to it. Because of their position, they obviously have a vehicle and ability to get a large number of people to hear that message,” says Rock the Vote President Jehmu Greene (Brownfeld 1). While it seems many younger members of society rarely keep up with current events consistently, most of them concern themselves with their favorite entertainers and care about their interests and opinions. The Pew Research Center for People and the Press states, “Young people those age 18-24 are considerably more...
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