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Let's talk about Youth, or (from an obvious outside standpoint) what the distinct lack of it in the Pirate Party.

I've been a member here for just over 6 months. Not too long, I must admit, however I come from a hugely left-wing background, where my father works for a Trade Union and has been a member of Labour all his life... Who also runs (or ran, nfi the state of it atm) a small record label... And hates TPB. Story for another time perhaps.

I was attracted to this place because I believed it was the party for the youth. Supporting votes for 16-year olds, believing the youth should have a say in the goings on in the country, and in this party. It's brilliant, I thought, that coupled with support for people's privacy and reforms on copyright should have a lot of youth here.

However, I've honestly only seen one (possibly another) person under the age of 20 here, or on Mumble (Where I'm sat in General Chat most days). So, if you are young. Come out of the woodwork, show your face. I'll happy to be proved wrong by many people replying to this post. (Or one of the people at the office presenting stats showing different).

But this still could do with conversation. This seems like the optimal party for young people. How do we get more kids involved? If I can remember back to when I joined, I asked Ed (tuoni) about some sort of 'Youth Wing' which doesn't exist. Should this be a thing, or something else. Discuss.


  • The left wingers are coming out of the brickwork...

    But yeah, the fact that those uneducated in computing and how the internet works astounds me everyday. But it's sorta changing, being the first year to do a GCSE in Computer Science (coding, how computers work etc) but taught by a teacher WHO DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO CODE. Which is fun considering he's a dedicated Com Sci teacher... Leading to me and another in our class being the source of all help for everyone... Also being the one who's had to re-do a whole History essay because of using Wikipedia for some of it leads me to be a little grouchy (Yes, it can be edited by anyone BUT IT NEEDS CITATIONS).

    It annoys me the fact that the 18-21 section of people have the highest amount of people who don't vote and then complain that the government is shit: "Oh did you vote?" "No" "Idiot". Also annoys me that Russell Brand is telling people not to vote - his people are the 18-21s who are already swimming in political apathy. ARGH. Also, sitting in my school's Citizenship class (a class which you only do if you don't do full course PE, and are already doing an IT-related course and is only a half-course topic) being the only one who knows anything about Politics (more than the teacher... THEME HERE) is also a fairly interesting situation. The UK is a place which is unknown - where people don't seem to want to get involved in politics. Of which the governments feed and this is a problem. I talk about politics and I'm told to "get lost, this is a boring conversation piece". Why do we see this as boring? Makes no sense...

    Ah well. We'll eventually get there. But we should be focusing on the 16-17s and get them interested in the Pirates, then we should get votes for when they can. Easy way of drumming up support, something that Labour did (when they were more left) with The Woodcraft Folk, and still do (slightly). Comes back to some sort of Youth organisation with PP, and something that there used to be? There's a twitter page for "Young Pirates UK" that hasn't been touched since mid 2009 so it used to be a thing? Maybe... could be something to relaunch.

    But yeah, I'm glad that PP thinks the youth are a priority, but not too glad it hasn't extended to a lot of members, mind...
  • Pretty much my point. The Youth are this forgotten majority, ignored by the higher peers of the country because they won't do anything on election day. Social attitudes are stupid in terms of not talking about politics but, eh.

    I live in a Tory Safe-Seat, even though it holds a lot of working class areas who simply don't vote, where I live included. There's an aversion to vote, when my dad was campaigning in the local elections last year his car was pelted with eggs and stones. Fun.

    The Government appeals to the people who'll vote for them. Reforms to pensions so they're easier and give you more? Check. Roll in those votes. Simple way to votes. Best way to appeal to youth? Improve the internet. Naah too expensive. Love our situation...
  • Been facing people's patronising tone for ages, let's just ignore the fact I'm supposed to start paying tax now...

    So, let's have some interaction from the larger pool of people, and see some more options here, and ideas to what can be done to increase the amount of youths engaged in politics!
  • First, Welcome to the party :)

    I was younger once! Now I'm 26 so getting on a bit. I know there is a massive disconnect between young people and politics. I believe the education system is partly to blame for this.
    Young people are a huge priority to me personally, it's part of the reason I joined the party. To me they are easily ignored until they create a problem. We've seen huge riots in this country. In Wales we see youths literally set fire to a whole mountain around here. This isn't because young people are inherently evil pyromaniacs, this is because they aren't listened to, they're forgotten and they don't vote for you anyway so why appeal to them? It's really the wrong attitude for our Government to hold.
    Drowz0r, I think you hit the nail on the head. The conclusion by the government bodies about the 2011 riots were that it was largely down to criminality. Of course criminality happened, and a lot of the people involved had criminal records. However, any society worth its salt would also ask why these people had criminal records, what they were, and why people rioted.

    I’m not speaking with no knowledge of this area. My gran lived in Tottenham for 40+ years and I lived in Edmonton nearly my whole life. I now live in Enfield and am in Tottenham regularly. Tottenham and Edmonton have suffered for years with lack of funding, Tottenham more so. The demographics of Tottenham have changed since the Broadwater farm riots. Previously there was a large West Indian community but it’s now diluted down with people from elsewhere.

    When you speak to people in Tottenham its clear something is fundamentally wrong. The social issues are not being addressed. Neither are infrastructure/development issues. The cuts made which closed down local centres just aided discontent in the lead up to the riots. The cuts on education really have hit these areas the hardest. The removal of EMA and the rise of tuition fees whilst colleges withdrew their A-level courses at local colleges meant you only had one shot at education and a lot of people in these areas sadly mess up first time. In fact I got a post I’m writing about education and the effect on the populace which will be up soon.

    The focus on older voters is extremely worrying. They have a completely different view on everything unsurprisingly and having lived their lives and voted in governments (which they now claim have ruined the country) want to pull us to the right of the spectrum largely (Yes, I’m generalising!).

    So, we get pointless debates on immigration and removing freedom of movement, when we should be discussing rising inequality, disaffected youth, and costs of welfare (an ageing population who cost far more than people coming into this country funnily enough!)

    I think youth may feel that the country is shaped by older people unfortunately. It sure is the way I felt.

    The youth of this country from 16+ are capable of political debate and can do no worse than adults when it comes to debate. I mean look at how adults debate the EU issue? Does anyone actually see any facts? Just myths and lots of people on TV who don’t know the difference between democratic systems.

    In conclusion, I feel education is one of the ills of many things the UK faces particularly youth voting and in politics, and social ills, North/South divide etc.

  • edited January 2015
    I feel like people need to stop welcoming me, I've been here nearly a year! ;)

    Anyway, education is at the root of it. The main subject that should be focused on teaching people/children about politics is largely ignored, unprepared and, well, optional (and when I know more then the teacher about it is when it gets worrying...). Continuing on with that theme, I was watching Pointless a few weeks back, that weird TV Quiz show, and there was a teacher there. She described herself as a "Geography teacher who also does a bit of IT".

    Really. One of the most important things going on at the moment and they best you can get is "a bit of" it. SMH.

    The whole North/South thing is an issue, which is interesting seeing how Cameron/Osbourne/OtherGenericMan saying how he wants to invest in the Northern Cities (Manchester) more. Doubt it'll happen mind...

    But I do sit on Mumble most days so will be free to have a good conversation with one of you lot! This is a conversation that needs to keep going...

    Well this was what UKIP was doing back when they were small?
  • Bit late to the party but oh well.

    I've just gone 17 and have been a member of PPUK for almost a year now. I suppose the lack of youth in the party is fairly apparent at the moment but once our word starts to spread about, we should hopefully gain in popularity.

    The entire reason I joined the Pirate Party was because I'm just sick and tired of seeing the three main parties bickering with each other. My dad (some sort of database technician for the IAPA) is a member of the Green Party and is helping to field a candidate in Hexham. He shares a few views with me in that the main parties seem to just blame each other for everything. All I ever hear on Radio 4 discussions is "...under Labour, this, this and this happened" and "under a Conservative Government, the NHS has blah blah blah".

    It's sickening and childish and how the main parties haven't lost credibility yet is beyond me. Last Monday there was a session in my College Tutorial group regarding politics, and trying to get younger people more involved. The main reasons (as you've all probably heard before) is that younger people aren't having their interests represented as it appears the government is full of 50+ year olds bickering over who said what.

    I feel that more political education in schools, perhaps as part of the curriculum, would be great. From a personal standpoint, I'd love to see education almost completely separated from government and instead of being overseen by an 'Education Minister' who, as we've seen recently with the likes of Mr Gove, doesn't know what they're doing half the time. Personally, I'd like to see an independent board set up that is overseen by high ranking educational figures (such as experienced teachers) who manage the curriculum and schools in this country, as academies seem to be a massive waste of time. For example, my old school used to be Quarry View Primary and Pennywell Comprehensive, and they renamed it 'Academy 360' (...what!?) and gave it a fresh coat of paint in the hope that it'd change everything. Where is the logic?!

    At the moment, I live in a fairly safe Labour safe-seat, but I plan on changing this as I rather hope to run in 2020.
  • Pleasure to meet you Nik, and sadly I have to agree with most of what you've said there...

    I've no idea why everyone thinks "Turn it into an academy and it'll be ok" is a good train of thought... Seriously? GUYS. MAKE NO SENSE!
    I'm currently having trouble getting people my age involved more in political thought, but most just can't be bothered, which annoys me as they're focusing on who they're taking to prom (I already have a date #efficient), what they're gonna wear etc... not knowing what's happening in the world around them - AND WHAT'S TO AFFECT THEM WHEN THEY FINISH!

    You're up in Hexham then? My family comes from near there (Monkwearmouth) but I am situated (born, live etc) down south. It's quite a nice place too...
    Anyway, glad to see someone around my age too...

    I'm in a similar situation, but living in a very safe Tory seat, which I'll plan to shake up a bit come 2020 and I'm standing for the Pirates #MarkMyWords
  • Thanks Michael. I live even closer to where your family is from, as my local constituency is Sunderland Central. I've lived in Sunderland since I was six, as my parents divorced in late 2003 after a house fire and whatnot, but I used to live in Coulsdon near Croydon.

    I do believe Sunderland Central is a Labour safe seat, because the general consensus around here is that everyone hates the Tories after what happened in the 1980's or whatever.

    Council elections sound interesting, as my mum is forever complaining about our councillors lining their pockets and doing nothing good for the city. I mean, compared to Newcastle, Sunderland's city centre is, I hate to say it, a bit of a dump. Whilst I'm not complaining that there's a Greggs every five square metres, there's just nothing for the city to really offer any more...
  • *Brushes dust off*

    So I took the bold step a while ago to attempt to push through a youth-thing here... So at the moment I've got a twitter account going before anything else happens: @PirateYouthUK. Do give it a follow please!
  • Just followed it from a bunch of the Party accounts.

    I hope the Youth-thing does pick up. If this twitter account becomes an official part of the PPUK social-media presence drop me a line on s.ogden@pirateparty.org.uk so we can arrange me connecting it to the Party's hootsuite setup.

    If you want to join the social-media team (and mailing list) drop me a line on social-media@pirateparty.org.uk
  • I have to say that I agree with all that all of you say, including about Tottenham [my 'Manor' and football team!], but feel quite 'aged' at 52! However, I'm extremely concerned as to the lack of interest in politics from all age groups, though mostly the first timers, like Rustler Bland! I've just gone through my second GE and have been shocked by the utter 'switch off' factor going on, in fact, in my constituency, the lab con robots got almost identical votes as in 2010, with the scraps going to the also-rans.............omg, we've got work to do!!
  • Incidentally, Tottenham Hotspur FC are building a brand new ground with all sorts of extra facilities, plus new housing is going in aswell as proper shops and a 'University of Tottenham'.........stuff of a madman's dreams, but actually happening in London N.17 0AP! But then I would say that wouldn't I? And once the improved surrounds happen, then the happy [clever] youth follow.........................Pirates!
  • The new Tottenham ground is controversial considering the businesses that have had to shut down... But it does look like a nice little place. A University there should be a nice recruitment base too... Hmmmmmm
  • MichaelDuck, make the walls [harbours] attractive and 'they' [pirates] will come..........................
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