by Geoffrey Churchman

The first general election I voted in was in 1975 at the age of 18, and in fact it was the first election in which 18-year-olds could vote in NZ. Politicians showed up at Victoria University to appeal to new voters, and I can remember that then Labour Prime Minister Bill Rowling did not get a good reception, being showered with paper darts.  He experienced a landslide defeat that year.

But that was 47 years ago, and times have changed. We know why the Jacinda regime wants to lower the voting age: they think that 16 and 17 year olds will all vote for Leftist candidates and policies because of the indoctrination in neo-Marxism and Wokeism that school students now get. But I’m dubious that many of them will vote at all. In Kapiti it’s pretty rare to see anyone under 30 in election meetings and in fact most audiences comprise over-40s.

I’m also dubious about the Jacindanistas’ assumption that 16 and 17 year olds would all support Leftists — a lot would depend on how their parents vote which is still likely to be as influential as the brainwashing that teachers try to give them.  In fact, ACT may get as many votes as do Greens.

The big question, however, is are 16 year olds mature enough, let alone have the life experience to understand the issues?  At my high school, issues of the day like Apartheid in South Africa, French nuclear testing and censorship (in those days of sexual activity rather than political ideology) were given airing and we had a reasonable understanding of them, but we couldn’t claim to have full information.

At present in Jacindaland you need to be 18 to have a credit card and drink in a pub. But you can join the military at 17 and get a gun or driver’s license at 16.  The age limits seem rather arbitrary ones. However, my attitude is keep voting for “adults only” at 18 and over.

In Nazi Germany you could enlist in the military at age 17; in Jacindaland it is the same.