Last month’s massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School has unlocked a groundswell of possibility around youth activism. After nearly a million students walked out of school on March 14 to protest gun violence, hundreds of thousands more are expected to gather this weekend for the March for Our Lives in Washington, D.C., and in smaller-scale “sibling marches” in communities around the world.

Meaningful gun control, a political pipe dream that has widely been dismissed as unworkable, suddenly seems like a live issue in state and federal elections going forward. And it’s not the only one: The surge of democratic mobilization led mostly by children has triggered calls in the mainstream press to lower the voting age.

Well, 16-year-olds are typically very ignorant, they don’t know what they’re doing, they’re not well informed about politics, they don’t reason about politics very well,’ and all of those claims are true. But the problem is, neither do most 18-year-olds or most 24-year-olds or most 50-year-olds. They’re usually ignorant and misinformed and irrational as well.

It’s a policy priority that national and local activists are organizing for in the real world — and they’ve already won big victories. Three Washington suburbs have lowered the voting age to 16 for local elections in the last five years. A 2016 referendum allowing 16-year-olds to participate in school board elections passed with 70 percent of the vote in Berkeley, California, and a similar measure was narrowly defeated in San Francisco the same year.

Read the full article on lowering the voting age by Kevin Mahnken at The 74