Should 16- and 17-year-olds be able to vote?


Hour 2

Should teens younger than 18 be allowed to vote? That’s the finding of new research by Camden-Rutgers childhood studies and nursing professor ROBERT ATKINS and DANIEL HART, Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Children and Childhood Studies at Rutgers University. In a recent paper in the Annals of The American Academy of Political and Social Science, they argue that by age 16, U.S. teens develop the qualities of citizenship traditionally associated with voting, on par with their peers over the legal voting age of 18. This paper stems from and informs their pioneering research and community service with youth in Camden, where Hart and Atkins co-founded the STARR (Sports Teaching Adolescents Responsibility and Resiliency) Program, which combines year-round sports, community service, camping, and homework support in order to foster development among youth in one of the poorest cities in America.

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[audio: 030911_110630.mp3]

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