Okay, guys. We're about to open a door we've kept closed for a little too long now; we're going to talk politics.
STOP. WAIT. DON'T GO.
This is more than just politics. This is rebelling, this is breaking away — this is shaping your own opinion and kick starting your life.
We’re officially in our 20s, and although there is a huge part of me that is going through my first mid-life crisis, I’m pretty pumped for the future and whatever it has in store for me.
With this comes responsibilities, but responsibilities are choices, too, so let's make the right ones together.
Politics are actually pretty cool, so let's discuss what exactly this 2016 election means for us, as members of Generation-Y:
1. Being rebellious
Politics allows you to be rebellious with your choices and your research.
Whatever you want to get into, you can. The possibilities are endless, so don’t hold back.
2. This is affecting our lives, literally
I think what we all need to do is come to terms with adulthood. Unfortunately, these sweet days won’t last forever.
So, this 2016 election is affecting us more than ever because when the time comes and we’re 24 or 25 (pause for reaction), we’ll start to care where the money we’re finally making on our own is really going.
Do I give a sh*t about taxes now that I’m in my junior year of college and have little to no real responsibilities yet? Absolutely not.
Will I care when I get my first real paycheck and half of it is deducted and I can’t afford my rent that month?
Or worse, can’t afford that Friday night cocktail at the bar because all the money I did make had to go to that month's rent?
You bet your ass. The future is coming, and it’s close.
3. This is our history
We may not realize it, but every sector of this election will someday be in a textbook from which our children, our grandchildren and so on will learn.
It's no longer just, “Four score and seven years ago”; our children will learn about the first African American president and the first woman who ran for election. This is bigger than we know.
4. Politics is so much more than we think
Think of something that makes you angry about the world or something you’re really passionate about — it probably roots back to some sort of politics.
Weed legalization? Politics. Gas prices? Politics.
The pothole you sped over down your street while you were looking for your phone between the seats that almost made your bumper fall off? Politics.
5. Politics is so much easier than we think
Keeping up with elections and all other things political seems like a drag.
No one wants to watch a two-hour speech when "21 Jump Street" is on with no commercials, but with social media and technology at only an arms length away at all times, keeping up with anything in the news is extremely simple.
Getting educated on the presidential campaign is as easy as following CNN on Twitter, or any other news platform for that matter.
Once you get a feel for that, you’ll get more comfortable and find that other networks distribute more things you would like to hear.
Before you know it, you you’ll be like me — always checking the latest article so I can argue about something I disagree with. Which leads me to my next point…
6. Debate is cool because you get to argue for fun
My friends and I do this thing where we like to get drunk and talk about controversial subjects — mainly because there’s no holding back and anything goes.
Things can get as heated as possible and five minutes later, you’re just worried about where your next shot is. Regardless, drunk or sober, it’s fun to argue.
Especially in an environment where it’s acceptable to be forceful about your thoughts, which is usually in front of your closest peers.
Still, hearing other people's opinions on different topics is not only entertaining, but also enlightening.
You can learn from other people without changing what you originally thought.
Just the simple process of listening to others can open your mind to an array of different perspectives.
7. Building your own damn opinion
Repeat after me: You are not your parents. It’s totally fine to be raised with certain ideologies, but if you come to find you agree with something your parents wouldn’t, you're entitled to make your own decisions now.
It could be scary, but standing up for something you believe to be true is that sweet form of rebellion I talked about earlier.
Don’t argue something you know nothing about. Listen! Absorb! Break away!
8. Remember, you have a voice and a vote
And, your vote matters. I don’t want to sound like an Obama campaign, but you do have a voice and it matters more than you think.
Your opinions and the act of voicing them can be the motion that causes a wave of change that this world needs.
Don’t be afraid to be forceful and fierce; Beyoncé didn't become Beyoncé by keeping quiet.