Patterico's Pontifications

10/30/2018

Revealed: Why Millennials Don’t Vote

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:19 am

Millennials explain to New York Magazine why they haven’t ever voted. The primary reason appears to be: mailing things is too hard.

Tim | Age 27 | Austin, Texas | Has Never Voted
I tried to register for the 2016 election, but it was beyond the deadline by the time I tried to do it. I hate mailing stuff; it gives me anxiety. I don’t remember seeing voter-registration drives, no. I’ve seen a lot more the past two years. I’m sure there must have been stuff. I just don’t remember it.

. . . .

Megan | Age 29 | San Francisco, California | Last Voted: 2014
I rent and move around quite a bit, and when I try to get absentee ballots, they need me to print out a form and mail it to them no more than 30 days before the election but also no less than seven days before the election. Typically, I check way before that time, then forget to check again, or just say “Fuck it” because I don’t own a printer or stamps anyway.

. . . .

Jocelyn | Age 27 | Arlington, Massachusetts | Last Voted: 2016
It was easier to get my medical-marijuana card — not a right, or even federally legal — than it was to register to vote. Massachusetts had online registration but only if you have a DMV-issued ID. I don’t drive, so I was like, okay, I can register in person, but I’m also dealing with a chronic illness. Every day is a guessing game: Am I going to feel up to doing anything today? I put it off. The week before the deadline, I ended up being really sick and I wasn’t able to leave home. You can send in your registration by mail, but I didn’t have stamps. I kept thinking that I shouldn’t have to jump through this many hoops to register.

. . . .

Anna | Age 21 | New York, New York | Has Never Voted
I’m trying to register in my hometown of Austin, Texas. It’s such a tedious process to even get registered in Texas, let alone vote as an absentee. There’s no notification service about the status of my voter registration. There’s a small, outdated website where you can enter your information and check. When I was at the post office to register, this poor girl, clearly also a college student like me, didn’t know what “postmarked” meant and had no idea how to send an important document by mail. Most people my age have zero need to go to the post office and may have never stepped into one before. Honestly, if someone had the forms printed for me and was willing to deal with the post office, I’d be much more inclined to vote.

This obviously reveals a big problem with our country.

Mailing has become too hard.

That’s why I’ll be writing my Congressman to urge him to support a new law that makes it easier to mail things.

Ah, shit, never mind, I don’t own any stamps. I guess I could email him but then I’d have to Google and have you tried using Google lately? Totally hard.

If I had more time, I’d do a riff from The Coddling of the American Mind about how helpless young people are these days. Just read it and you’ll see what I mean.

50 Responses to “Revealed: Why Millennials Don’t Vote”

  1. I live in Massachusetts.

    She can also walk into her voting location on election day and file a provisional ballot and fill out a voter registration form then. She could also walk into her town hall and fill out a voter registration form at any time.

    Xmas (e63a38)

  2. Snail mail’s for losers. It’s so 80’s.

    Tillman (61f3c8)

  3. I’m not voting in any partisan elections this year because the system is so corrupt it doesn’t matter; I’m screwed anyway. Is that a good enough reason?

    And I’m 40, so I’m pretty sure I’m not considered a millenial.

    Gryph (08c844)

  4. I suspect sampling error of the Pauline Kael variety.

    nk (dbc370)

  5. I ever only not voted in the 1994 midterms because I was out of town and it was the only time my Congressional District elected a Republican. Hmm.

    nk (dbc370)

  6. Think the ‘young people today are lazy and helpless’ articles started around the time of Pliny The Elder.

    Time123 (b53270)

  7. I fear for the country. If mailing is too hard, or they can’t figure out how to buy a stamp (which you can order online), then I don’t know what they’ll do if the country faces another crisis, like 9-11, or a flu pandemic.

    Rochf (877dba)

  8. 7. I don’t fear for our country just because stupid people don’t vote. Stupid people shouldn’t vote.

    Gryph (08c844)

  9. 6. I’m far more worried about the older folks who ought to know better and don’t.

    Gryph (08c844)

  10. nk, you were relatively young back then, and thats because the incumbent got greedy with postage if I remember.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  11. millennials in many many ways

    they deserve to live in the whirl they vote for

    but some of them are really nice

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  12. I think that our country would improve almost immediately if it were harder to vote. Maybe we should repeal the 24th amendment and charge a dollar. If the clueless people who cast an uninformed vote because “it’s their duty” would just stay home, elections would choose better people.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  13. There are a lot of groups helping voters deal with the complications of registration and absentee voting, for example:

    https://pjmedia.com/trending/former-dem-leader-in-texas-implicated-in-organized-voter-fraud-ring-ag-says/

    The groups risk being accused of “vote harvesting” — largely by helping the elderly confused (or young and ignorant) voter choose for president or governor, then the “helper” picks the city councilman or school board trustee or bond approval choice in a “non-partisan” race. The non-partisan candidates or PACs pay the “volunteer” voter-assistance groups.

    Pouncer (df6448)

  14. If you don’t own land – No voting for you.

    mg (536c95)

  15. Presenting a valid Government ID to vote is beyond the level of SEAL training, I hear.

    Ed from SFV (6d42fa)

  16. I had to register in New Mexico. There are some hoops. IF you register in person, you need a valid in-state DL (do not have because a RealID takes some documentation, some of which is in a box someplace). But if you register through the mail (!) you need only provide a copy of your passport info page and a copy of a utility bill at your address, plus a filled out national form.

    Luckily I had stamps, a blank envelope and a pen. Without those, I don’t know what I’d have done.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  17. I ever only not voted in the 1994 midterms

    I was a candidate that year, so I had to be registered.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  18. speaking of millennials i just made a decide that Beto’s a lock for veep

    plan accordingly

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  19. My favorite:

    Drew | Age 21 | Berkeley, California | Last Voted: 2016

    I feel like the Democratic Party doesn’t really stand for the things I believe in anymore. Why should I vote for a party that doesn’t really do anything for me as a voter? Millennials don’t vote because a lot of politicians are appealing to older voters. We deserve politicians that are willing to do stuff for our future instead of catering to people who will not be here for our future. I’m a poli-sci major, so talking about politics is a daily thing for me. Half of the people I talk to seem very into voting. The other half are people who, like me, don’t really feel represented. The only thing they choose to vote in is local elections.

    It’s hard to know where to start with this cluelessness. And he’s a poliSci major. WHat do they teach at Berkeley (other than communism)?

    “Millennials don’t vote because a lot of politicians are appealing to older voters” – confuses cause and effect. If you don’t vote, you are dead to politicians. Old people ALL vote.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  20. speaking of millennials i just made a decide that Beto’s a lock for veep

    Not Abortion Barbie? How quickly they are cast aside.

    Kevin M (a57144)

  21. they have to toss the white boys a bone while they nominate an ethnic cougar for the top of the ticket Mr. M

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  22. Mexico needs to stop the Soros train of illegals. It is wrong that illegals votes mean as much as mine.

    mg (9e54f8)

  23. Megan | Age 29 | San Francisco, California | Last Voted: 2014
    [] Typically, I check way before that time, then forget to check again, or just say “F[][]k it” because I don’t own a printer or stamps anyway.

    A vulgar [rhymes with rut] who says “F..k it” that casually … it is a good thing she does not vote.

    nk (dbc370)

  24. How the heck do these folks send birthday or Christmas packages to friends/relatives who don’t live nearby? Jeebus. You can also buy stamps at the grocery store for Pete’s sake. I actually haven’t voted since 2008 because I have lived in Vermont and Maryland since 2010. Both deep blue states without a chance of electing a Republican Senator/Congressman. Hogan’s doing pretty well though in Maryland.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  25. True story to brighten the day of the folks who hate me:

    I recently had to mail a letter for the first time in 10+ years. I naturally had no stamps.

    I was in the process of moving, and I was supposed to pick up the keys for my new place the next day. Since it was the weekend, and the post office was closed, on my way home from dinner I decided to see if Walmart sells stamps.

    On the way into Walmart’s parking lot, I misjudged the road while turning (I thought there was a right-turn lane, but there wasn’t), ran over the curb at 30 mph or so, and blew out the right front tire of my car. Being a 2016 hybrid, it has no spare, just a “mobility kit” which is supposed to seal and re-inflate minor punctures. Quarter-sized holes in the sidewall, not so much.

    Towing: $75
    Replacement tire + installation: $175
    Uber rides to/from tire place: $50

    Most expensive postage stamp ever.

    As John Wayne never said (but he should have):

    “Life is hard. But it’s harder when you’re stupid.”

    So now I too hate mailing stuff. It gives me anxiety.

    Dave (9664fc)

  26. You can also buy stamps at the grocery store for Pete’s sake.

    you can also buy stamps on Amazon turdlord Jeff Bezos’s e-commerce site, “amazon.com”

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  27. Now, why is it that every time I read about a mainstream media source interviewing ‘millennials’ I get the strong impression that the interviewed are making fun of the journalist?

    Maybe the millennials are just that silly. Or maybe the journalists are just that gullible.

    Or maybe I should embrace the power of ‘and’.

    C. S. P. Schofield (043293)

  28. @ Dave – Are you one of those guys who never mails birthday/Christmas cards? Bills I can understand since I pay almost everything online. Scary how quickly our society would collapse if the internet was out for longer than a week nationwide. Sorry about the car; buy a fossil fuel car 😛

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  29. @Happyfeet – that too. But I figured everyone goes to the grocery store. Unless you’re a Midas who can afford to have groceries ordered online and delivered weekly.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  30. I’m a poli-sci major, so talking about politics is a daily thing for me. Half of the people I talk to seem very into voting.

    In what weird world is one “very into voting”? It seems to me equivalent to being “very in to brushing my teeth” or “very in to taking out the garbage.” It’s something you do because you need to do it and it’s better to do it than to not. But it really shouldn’t be a cause for civic celebration, not matter what dunderheaded celebrities tell you on public service ads.

    JVW (42615e)

  31. peapod’s actually kind of affordable but you have to have at least 4-5 mouths to feed to make it work (plus you have to keep it real)

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  32. And guys, now that they have those “Forever” stamps that aren’t subject to rate changes, there’s very little excuse for not having a book of stamps stashed away somewhere in a desk drawer. It’s not like the old days when you were constantly having to buy three-cent stamps to use with your old stamps every time they upped the rate for first class letters.

    JVW (42615e)

  33. Here’s a neat trick too: a bunch of charities will send you a stamp to use in the return envelope in which they expect you to mail a check (yeah, I know, no one uses paper checks any longer either). Apparently the marketing gurus have told them that enclosing the stamp increases the likelihood of getting money. I like to either pocket the stamps and use them for something else, or else return the solicitation form with no check but a nice note thanking them for allowing me to give the U.S. Postal Service some business with the return envelope. That usually ends up getting you removed from their mailing lists too, so it’s a win/win.

    JVW (42615e)

  34. I want to speak up for millenials. It’s hard to get organized when you are young and starting college, a career, family, etc. Everything is new and takes time to learn, and at that stage most people focus on the big things in their lives and let the details slide. It’s only as we get older that we learn the importance of (or take the time for)/being organized and tending to details. Things like voting and even mail are details to them, especially since a lot of their “details” are handled online or by their parents.

    DRJ (15874d)

  35. @JVW – I’ve not seen that from the charities in our area. Usually, they send books of address labels and a plea for money. My wife loves to use the address labels. We just don’t send any money unless it’s a veterans group or Catholic charities.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  36. 34… they could deal with more details if they stayed off their damned phones and social media.

    Colonel Haiku (97d6f1)

  37. You kids stay off my GD lawn!!!!

    Colonel Haiku (97d6f1)

  38. Plus, google is, like, a small old website lol.

    jpe (e8fd9b)

  39. In person or by mail, voting is a PITA. Some parties have an interest in making it more so. But the kids’ll do fine. Per Forbes magazine, the average age of the ‘youngsters’ at NASA’s Mission Control in the Apollo era- those self-absorbed, nerdy dweebs who put men on the moon– was just 26 years old (although other sources have it pegged at a range of 24 to 29.) Regardless, they did okay and changed the world in the process for the rest of us. And w/smartphones instead of slip-sticks in hand, so will– and are millennials.

    They’ll work it out.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  40. Per Forbes magazine, the average age of the ‘youngsters’ at NASA’s Mission Control in the Apollo era- those self-absorbed, nerdy dweebs who put men on the moon– was just 26 years old (although other sources have it pegged at a range of 24 to 29.) Regardless, they did okay and changed the world in the process for the rest of us.

    That shouldn’t come as too surprising. Aerospace engineering was a pretty new field then, so it makes sense that it was populated by a bunch of recent college grads working for older managers who probably had degrees in mechanical and electrical engineering. It’s kind of like web designers and HTML programmers in the mid-1990s: practically all of them were in the under-25 category.

    JVW (42615e)

  41. @40. Google the Space Task Group. They were the more ‘long-in-the-tooth’ crowd. Gilruth, Kraft, Faget, etc. If memory serves, the youngest member was Glynn Lunney. But they plucked the younger engineers right out of college.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  42. In 1976 I hustled to the registrar of voters for my area and stood in line to register. I did the same thing a year earlier to register for the draft, but the guys at the post office said they’d just been told it was no longer required.

    Avoided Viet Nam but not the distinction of being a Jimmy Carter voter.

    harkin (fc9aef)

  43. 39… voting is a privilege. It leaves me with an upbeat feeling every time I have done it, even here in California.

    Colonel Haiku (97d6f1)

  44. Blaxit must be stopped!

    harkin (fc9aef)

  45. Kanye West? Never heard of her.

    nk (dbc370)

  46. It turns out Rick Ross who named himself the nicky barnes or Frank Matthew’s of the valley was law enforcement

    Narciso (d1f714)

  47. Well he was corrections officer for 18 months

    Narciso (d1f714)

  48. You can send in your registration by mail, but I didn’t have stamps. I kept thinking that I shouldn’t have to jump through this many hoops to register.

    Patterico: This obviously reveals a big problem with our country.

    Mailing has become too hard.

    Too unusual.

    You can order stamps by mail. You can buy stamps at a CVS or some other stores.

    But he probably didn’t know that.

    In New York, you can get forms (from time to time) that don’t require stamps. You can also go into any polling place on Election Day and register (or get the form) for the next election.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  49. 26. happyfeet (28a91b) — 10/30/2018 @ 9:34 am

    you can also buy stamps on Amazon turdlord Jeff Bezos’s e-commerce site, “amazon.com”

    I thought you had to go to usps.gov. But what I would actually do if I needed to do that is do a Google search.

    Thes epeople just simply do not use snail mail

    You know what just happened. National Grid (natural gas) just sent an notification with their last bill that as of November, they will stop sending postage paid envelopes with the bill (although it could sound like it means stop asking for payments by mail, that’s not true.)

    They said you could go to ngrid.com/envelopes to find out other ways to pay them.

    https://www.nationalgridus.com/Changes-to-Bill-Payment-Envelopes

    They are wrong – most banks not just some allow Bill Pay and on the otehr hand most in person p;laces would charge a fee.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

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