Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Thursday, September 28, 2023

Letter to the Editor: Student engagement still active

 I am writing in response to the article ""Student involvement and interest in politics on the decline,"" published November 1, 2009.

Since the 2008 general election, student political involvement remains energized and active. Regardless of the number of attendees at a student organization kickoff meeting, students not only care about political issues, but want to be involved as well.

Complicated issues face our generation today, including two wars abroad, a broken health-care system and an economic downturn. Because of the complexity of these issues, I believe some students feel that they cannot effect substantial change, and therefore become detached from the political process. And who can blame them? Students do not vote on foreign, economic or health policies. The officials we work hard to elect do the voting. If we work hard, we can affect public opinion and influence the decisions of elected officials. But these policies take time to change.

In an election, however, students work hard and see the direct results of their efforts. Students can see their progress and a clear end to the campaign. This is not the case in a non-election year when political organizations focus on issues and public policy. While these are certainly just as important as elections, I believe that not only students, but all people involved in politics, become frustrated with the pace and complications of the process, and they become less active. This does not represent a decline in interest––only the challenges of contemporary government and politics.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Daily Cardinal delivered to your inbox

And yet even in a nonelection year with difficult issues to campaign for, student organizations on campus have yet to see a lull in political activity while students demand health-care reform from their state legislators, pack a Madison City Council meeting to prove that students deserve a voice in our community and march for gay rights in Washington, D.C. As the force of the 2008 presidential election continues to pervade our politics, our generation's political engagement will continue to rise.

Molly Rivera

Chair, UW College Democrats

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Daily Cardinal has been covering the University and Madison community since 1892. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2023 The Daily Cardinal