Kansas Teens Announce Candidacy for 2018 Gubernatorial Election

,jhk

,jhk

Julia Paul

Teenagers haven’t always existed. Because of the growing separation between children and adults, “teenagers” were left in between, and the concept of a new generation took place. Too old to be thought of as kids that constantly need to be taken care of and too young to be thought of as mature adults, adolescents are caught in between and need to find their place in society.

Throughout history, youth movements and activists have led the way to societal change. From the Edelweiss Pirates (Edelweisspiraten) protesting Hitler Youth in the 1930’s to the Little Rock Nine fighting for racial equality in the 1960’s, the world’s young people have devoted their bottled up passion, ideas, and hope into constructive agendas.

The involvement of teenagers in politics is prominent today, and this involvement even extends to government races. Teenagers Ethan Randleas, a 17-year-old Republican from Wichita, Kan., Jack Bergeson, 16-year-old Democrat, also from Wichita, Kan., and 17-year-old Republican Tyler Ruzich from Prairie Village, Kan. have announced their candidacies for Kansas’ 2018 gubernatorial election.

Jack Bergeson, who is not yet eligible to cast a vote, has announced his candidacy for governor in the 2018 Kansas election. Photo courtesy of Christopher Burgess.

Although not old enough to cast a vote themselves, these high school students are eager to bring change to Kansas from the ground up.

Unlike other states, Kansas has no law specifying the qualifications to run for governor. There is neither an age limitation nor a residency requirement – anyone can run.

All over the United States, young people are breaking new ground. This trend of teenagers wanting to make a difference on the political stage carries across the country. 1,385 miles away in Vermont, 13-year-old Ethan Sonneborn is a Democratic candidate for Vermont’s governor seat in 2018.

Throughout history, teens under 18 have become active in political movements, eager to take action but not yet eligible to vote. Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Like Kansas, Vermont lacks constitutional qualifications for gubernatorial candidates. In both states, teens are using this absence to their advantage.

Sonneborn’s first endorsement was from Jack Bergeson, half way across the country in Kansas. They realized that they weren’t alone in their ambitions to bring about meaningful change in this country,  and wanted to help each other out.

These teens are taking a leap of faith, knowing that the worst that can happen is losing – and then get right back up and try again.