A new idea idea of politics: activism and social media

According to Pericles, the Athenian philosopher of the V century B.C., politics is the technique of good governance as well as care and respect for the community. 

Since then politics has been always a controversial topic in people’s mind and speeches, and still today this feeling has not changed.

The only difference is that now, politics has become part of our daily routine, especially because of the many posts shared on Twitter, Tik Tok or other social media, by Italian politicians.

In particular, with reference to the elections in September 2022, the opposed parties and candidates started a mass media campaign, using the major social platforms in order to get as many votes as possible, especially among young people.

Yet, this constant spamming on the most quoted social networks, elicited a very different reactions in the Italian youngsters’ mind. 

First of all, voters were and still are discouraged by the lack of content in the posts shared by the parties. There are no longer innovative electoral programs and each political program is very similar to the others: it only seeks to capture the citizens’ attention and interest in the electoral period. The focus is on topics of “common interest” in order to attract the majority of voters, but the problem is that these proposals are not deeply felt by politicians whose sole purpose is the awarding of a seat of power. 

This is not the idea of future young people have in mind, that’s the reason why many of them refused to participate in the elections. The abstentionism, in general, reached concerning numbers, since 16,5 million Italians did not vote in the last elections.

Over 60% of the under 35 are disinterested in politics, 86% of the under 25s believe it is essential to fight the social gap in our society, 78% have neither interest nor trust in political parties and believe they are experiencing injustices and exploitation. Young people feel the effects of the increasing weight of multinationals, and corrupt politicians do not contribute to the improvement of all these conditions. Italian politics has been suffering from deep discredit for years.

The youngsters  have always been the advancing new, an anticipation of the future: in fact, without the student movements, the great social revolutions such as those made by our fathers and mothers in the 70s could not have been accomplished.

It is important to remember that the so called “Generation Zed” has been defined the most disinterested in politics, yet they have often shown their commitment towards some major issues, such as the protection of the environment and so the planet, the immigrants’ rights and the Ius Scholae. They have conveyed their messages and beliefs organizing rallies, protests or flash mobs, that is, an act of rebellion in the form of activism. This way of showing interest in politics is often underestimated or criticized by older people, accustomed to an old-fashioned way of  expressing opinions, that limits itself to marking a preference with an X.

Nowadays  younger people consider politics as something different, it must be brought on the streets with the word “Activism” on its basis. For example, young people are asked for a serious commitment to fight the climate crisis, while our country’s responsibility on the same matter is always vague and indefinite, lacking a definitive and effective policy.

Activism is a symbol of the new civilization, in solidarity with each other and open to all; it uses new technology, such as social media, as a dissemination instrument through writings, video documentaries and podcasts, and gets the attention of a large part of the youngsters’ public opinion.

Petra Micheletto 5B


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