The issue over an 18 year old been able to serve on our City Council has become a one sided issue on our newspaper's online forum. Some have made it a civil or voter rights issue and the old standbys were used such as " if you're old enough to go to war you're old enough to to do pretty much anything. " I think the issue is deeper than that, I stated my reasoning but I quickly saw that I was not going to make any headway with that crowd. Some were getting out right angry.
I believe the rational thinking that went into making 21, the appropriate age to serve on the City Council was the right and I don't see anything that's happened to change that. It was never meant to denigrate 18 year olds. We do need to set some standards because we are a growing city and not a place for social experiments. If we're going to do that, let's have a small committee of therapists to give us the pros and cons.
I'm certainly not an expert but in my dealings with 18 year olds, yes even in the military, there's a lot of immaturity that needs to be dealt with before giving them a in position of responsibility. It's not fair to them or our city. As the letter writer stated, these children need to learn from the bottom up not the other way around. There may be some exceptions to the rule but we can't set of standards to exceptions. Don't you think they'll be people unfairly judging this young person ,if they happen to be elected. We would be putting them in a position to fail in an early part of their life. That's why a college graduate like Jackie Robinson was chosen to be a trailblazer. If an 18 year old gets elected and fails, it will set them and their generation back several years. What would happen if President Obama got involved in a scandal being the first black president and all.
The likelihood of an 18 year old getting elected does not have anything to do with a standard. We do need an age requirement. We always need to be prepared for a " what if " situation. I bet no one would question the reasoning behind Houston’s age restriction. We are not as large as Houston but that’s no reason we can’t use them a role model, rather than that of a smaller town that’s not going anywhere.