Monday, October 05, 2015

Time to get with the program Elections Canada!

Good Day Readers:

Every federal election it seems to be a common retrain these days - apathy and low voter turnout among young people who have unplugged and disconnected from the political process. Then they wonder how such bozos got elected?

Many of these individuals today practically live on the internet - social media. Highly sensitive information such as banking transactions are done routinely and electronically every day so why hasn't Elections Canada at least set up a pilot project whereby these people and cast their ballots securely online? While this is certainly not a panacea, some with their skinny, tight little asses unwilling to walk a couple blocks to a polling station might be tempted if it could be done with a couple clicks of a mouse.

If it works expand the process. Get with the program Elections Canada!

Clare L. Pieuk
The Drop: Why young people don't vote plumbs apathy just in time for election

Selina Chignall
Monday, October 5, 2015

Actor Dylan Playfair in, "The Drop: Why young people don't vote. (Facebook)

A new documentary film aimed at solving the riddle of apathy among young voters has already inspired one convert to the value of voting.

“I didn’t believe in voting until I started making this film,” said 29-year-old Kyle McCachen, Director of the documentary, The Drop: Why Young People Don’t Vote.

The film explores different elections in the United States and in Canada. Actor Dylan Playfair and McCachen travelled to Vancouver, Ottawa, Toronto, Raleigh, North Carolina, and Ferguson, Missouri to talk with political leaders, activists and young people to find out why youth don’t vote.

McCachen came to this project after meeting former MP Ian Waddell, who had recruited him to work on some short films. Originally, Waddell wanted to do a film about an election. They chose to look at the 2013 British Columbia provincial election because the NDP were having a strong showing in the polls. It was thought their strength was due to the support from the youth vote.

As McCachen was working on the film, he and the crew soon realized many young people didn’t know the election was even happening.

“We decided to change the subject of the film to why young people don’t vote — what’s driving that.”

The film was broadened to include other elections in Canada and the U.S. over the two-and-half year process it took to finish the documentary.

McCachen said while he was making this film, he was surprised to find out that young people were disillusioned with the political system — and it wasn’t a matter of being ignorant about politics. “At first they seemed unaware, but we recognized that lack of awareness was a lack of interest.”

He says when it comes to the topic of voting and political engagement, they feel like there is little mutual discussion — and they are being told to vote. “People wanted to talk about it, but they didn’t want to be scolded.”

McCachen says that youth are feeling left out by politicians who don’t reach out to young voters, which creates a downward spiral of disengagement. “We need something to happen to break out of that.”

One way to resolve this issue, says McCachen, is through creating open channels of communication and conversation with young people — to learn about what issues matter to them. This should be done by meeting them where they are — on social media. “Political leaders aren’t using online tools enough,” says McCachen.

With the release of this documentary a few weeks before the federal election, McCachen hopes that “it gets people voting.” He also hopes the film makes people understand that voting is broader than a single act — it’s part of a process. “An individual voter is a drop in the bucket, but as a society it’s about self-discovery.”

The Drop: Why Young People Don’t Vote airs on TVOntario tonight at 9:00 pm ET, Wednesday, October 7 at 9 p.m. ET, and in simulcast with CPAC on Sunday, October 11 at 11 p.m. ET/8 p.m. PT.


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