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I’m learning to care about politics, and you should too

I grew up in a household where my father would come home from work, turn on the television and flip back and forth between FOX News and CNN until he decided it was time to call it a night and go to sleep.

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Sometimes, if I had nothing better to do, I would sit down and watch the likes of Bill O’Reilly and Meghan Kelly with my father. As I watched them discuss topics well beyond my comprehension, one question constantly lingered in the back of my head:

What’s the point of all this?

I’ve never been into politics. It’s just not my thing. I’d much rather watch a random college basketball game on ESPN between two unranked teams than the latest democratic debate. That’s just how I am and that will probably never change. When I voted in the last presidential election, I only did so because I thought it was cool that I could now legally vote. I didn’t have any real knowledge or idea of which candidate would best serve our country, I just voted for the candidate that I could tolerate the most. When that candidate lost New Jersey, I was annoyed that I essentially played no part in the outcome of the election. I once again concluded that there was no point to politics and went back to not caring.

Until now.

In the past couple of months, I’ve taken more of an interest into politics and the political figureheads of our country. I’m not sure why I randomly decided to immerse myself into the political world. Maybe it was because I was tired of sitting in silence with no opinion whenever my friends would have a conversation about politics. Maybe I wanted to better understand the criticisms of Donald Trump instead of just going along with the crowd and bashing the President without any idea of what I’m saying.

Regardless, I’ve followed and learned more about politics in the past couple of months than I have in 21 years. I’ve researched policies that once read like a foreign language to me, international relations and those vying for the democratic presidential nomination. I still don’t watch news programs on FOX or CNN, but I now have a much better grasp of the political landscape.

As I’ve learned more about politics, I’ve come to realize that the more you know about a wide variety of things, the better off you are in life. We only live once. There’s no point in going through life uninformed on arguably the most important aspect of our country. It took me two decades to figure it out, but there most definitely is a point to politics.

Even if it’s just for a couple of minutes a day, take some time to read the news and familiarize yourself with what’s going on in the world. Take some time to learn more about what’s going on at the White House and those looking to earn the democratic nomination, beat Trump and ascend to the oval office.

You’ll thank me later.

Tyler Calvaruso is a senior journalism major from Howell, N.J. He can be reached at tyler.calvaruso@student,shu,edu.

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