Political Socialization

Topics: Death Penalty, Crime, Immigration to the United States Pages: 6 (2273 words) Published: February 3, 2013
Political Socialization
Political socialization can be thought of as the process by which a person attains his or her own personal political beliefs. I believe that political socialization is continuous development of one’s political outlook, based on the many influences one may encounter on a daily basis. An accumulation of these experiences will ultimately define an individual’s character by either altering or strengthening their current personal beliefs. This process of socialization has four major agents that will continue to influence us for the rest of our lives. The agents of political socialization are family, media, geographical location, and religion. These agents help formulate a person's character, identify their own philosophies, and controls the level of political involvement a person can achieve.

Family can be considered, as one of the foremost influences in political socialization, because they are responsible for one’s upbringing and spend a great deal of time with them. People spend an average of eighteen years of their life, living with their parents and are constantly being influenced during that time. While growing up, a child is especially impressionable because they look towards their parents for guidance and direction. Children can credit most of what they’ve learned from their parents’ from something as simple as basic communicating skills to driving a car for the first time. Parents play a vital role in a child’s early development and continue to be a prominent influence in their life, even after they’ve reached adulthood.

Such agents, like family for instance, can greatly impact the character of a person and help develop the type of person they will become. The affect of these agents can also help a person determine which political group or organization they’ll associate with, as well as set the level of political awareness and participation a person develops.

Growing up with a very liberal family has greatly changed my perspectives. Every member of my family has influenced me in a way that has helped me to determine my own political views and opinions. My parents play a leading role in my personal development since I value their beliefs the most. They are the type of people who are always up to date on current political issues and engage in political activities within our community. They are the type of people who are always watching political television shows and catching up on the newest information pertaining to different parties and social interest groups. As a result, this has allowed me to open my eyes to a variety of different perspectives including my own, which has caused me to be more liberal. The first political event that I can recall was the devastating September 11th attacks back in 2001. As I was getting ready for school in the morning, I noticed my aunt was still in her pajamas staring at the television with the look of utter disbelief. It was around 8:45 in the morning when a passenger took control over an American Airlines plane from Boston, Massachusetts and crashed it into the north tower of the World Trade Center (CNN). I just remember sitting in the living room watching this massive cloud of smoke rise into the sky covering everything it touched in ashes or derby. When I arrived at school we gathered around the television picking up from where we left off. Little did anyone know that this was just the first of many terrorist attacks to come. At exactly 9:03 another airliner had crashed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center leaving both buildings to burn side by side (CNN). For the rest of the day my family kept at least one television on, as reports of the terrorist attack were beginning to unfold. According to my parents they have always declared themselves as Independent. They would consider themselves as highly informed voters, with the intention to know as much as they can about every candidate before coming to a...
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