How To Be Politically Conscious

1. Do your research!

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Don't believe everything you read on the internet, even if it has a thousand likes and all your friends have shared it, it's important to remember that everything (especially on social media) is catered to fit a certain audience. So everything you're seeing, you're seeing for a reason. And it's important that you do proper research to make sure you're aware of the facts, looking at credible, legitimate sources is really the only way to make educated political decisions. 

 2. Read up!

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Reading, not just from one website or news source, but from a variety, is the best way to develop and expand your perspective. Especially reading from drastically different news sources (e.g. Fox News versus CNN), you can quickly detect the differences on the political spectrum among media, and better analyze how you interpret news from the media. 

3. Be Outspoken! pastedGraphic_1.png

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Don't be afraid to disagree with people. Being the lone voice is important some times. It can be very intimidating to be surrounded by people who all believe the same thing and support the same ideals, but the beauty of living in a democracy is that having different opinions allows for positive, engaging discourse! Don't hide your true thoughts or beliefs just because your friends disagree with you, stay true to yourself, as long as your opinions aren't harmful (racist, transphobic, homophobic, xenophobic, etc.), feel free to share them and to openly disagree with people. Debates and disagreements are both interesting and they open up the conversation for some very interesting questions. 

4. Network!

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Reach out to people who are more experiences and knowledgeable. Don't be afraid to talk to profs, parents, or even friends who seem very knowledgeable about politics or a specific field you're interested in. Clearly don't believe every thing they say, but take every learning opportunity and cherish it because it really is valuable. 

5. Question everything!

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Question the validity, authenticity, and biases of every thing you come across, whether it be an article, a speech, or just a funny political meme a friend shared on Facebook. Question who created the piece, why it was created, who the target audience was, whether you're being targeted specifically due to your demographic. The key to being an engaged and politically aware person is to have proper evidence to back up your beliefs, and to not fall into popular opinion. Being educated and aware is the most important thing.