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Practical Actions to Improve Civic Engagement in Texas

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Living in a community with high levels of civic commitment is becoming more uncommon around the world but most importantly right here in the state of Texas. There are different variants for civic engagement, but in this essay we will define how it looks like in Texas, why the problem of civic engagement in Texas exists and what can be done to solve it. Civic engagement can be as small as volunteering at a local boys’ and girls’ club, voting, or serving on a board. Volunteerism is anything that helps make the community benefit and prosperous. ‘Communities with strong indicators of civic health as measured by the Civic Health Index have higher employment rates, stronger schools, better physical health, and more responsive governments’ (‘Texas Civic Health Index’). Records show that enough engagement from a community impacts all demographics. If Texas were to get a larger turnout from the eighteen to twenty-nine-year-old age bracket, it would have a substantial effect on politics.

Currently, Texas is considered a predominately Republican state and has been for years. About four million eighteen to twenty-nine-year-old Texans voted in the last presidential election. Although several million voters seem rather practical, there are over 28 million citizens in this state. ‘Political participation remains extremely low. In 2016, Texas ranked 47th in voter turnout and 44th in voter registration. Texas Ranks Near Bottom for Political Participation and Civic Involvement” (‘UT News’). Being ranked at 44 out of 50 states proves that Texas citizens not only fail to get involved in community affairs but also in something as important as voting in our presidential races. Texas recently had one of the highest voter turnouts in our governor race for Ted Cruz vs Beto O’Rourke. Ultimately Republicans took the victory, but Cruz definitely had a run for his money. Beto was described as the underdog from the beginning but his efforts to get the younger democratic generation to vote and use their voice is what got him so much attention nationally. Not only did he prove Texas isn’t a solid red state anymore, but that when you give people hope for change anything is possible.

One change that must happen to get a higher voter turn out from the youth is specifically targeting the millennials. One of the most effective ways to reach voters under 30 is by connecting with them on social media in a positive way. This is where a large number of people get their news without having to read or watch it. Our current president is on twitter often enough for his name to be on the trending section of social media. Whether Texans agree with his opinions or not he does what he needs to be heard by the younger generation. Beto also had a very well put together social media team and that certainly helped spread his ideas too.

In addition, we need to work on making civic engagement seem ‘cool and fun’ This is a selfish generation and we’re always too busy to help others unless we know it’s going to benefit us as well. If more celebrities and other inspirational figures were to have more public charity events, more people would want to get involved because it’s the ‘in thing to do’. Just like when a celebrity goes vegan and the next day so is everyone else.

Equally important, the world is changing consistently, so I believe the way we approach political things must change too. Since Texas is such a conservative state talking about political opinions is considered a rude thing to do, that is a problem. How can it be expected of people to get engaged in what’s going on and build strong opinions, when politics is made out to be a dirty language. Although these are all rather simple fixes to get the people under 30 to vote it’s doubtful that these changes will be made anytime soon. Not only does everyone consider themselves too busy, but it’s often said ”my vote doesn’t matter.’ As ridiculous as that sounds ignorance plays a significant role in this low voter turnout. If we are able to further educate the youth on how much their vote matters they will be more inclined to voice their opinion when the time comes.

All in all, there are numerous ways to get the civic engagement statistics up in Texas I just don’t believe anyone is going to take the time to make sure this happens. Once politics start affecting peoples lives is when they start showing more of an interest in it, that just so happens to typically be at a later stage in peoples’ lives. Until we have another person like Beto come and get the millennial up and moving again the low turnout rate will continue.  

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Practical Actions to Improve Civic Engagement in Texas. (2023, February 11). GradesFixer. Retrieved March 24, 2023, from
“Practical Actions to Improve Civic Engagement in Texas.” GradesFixer, 11 Feb. 2023,
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