About a week ago I covered an event where state Rep. John Kivela, D-Marquette, visited the Marquette Alternative High School to speak to the students and take questions from them. I found myself pleasantly surprised by the questions they asked.
I will admit, covering someone speaking at a school isn't always the most exciting or interesting thing to do, but sometimes I get lucky. This was one of those times. The students there kept my attention the entire time and it made me glad to find out how informed about current issues the youth there really were.
There's always been this stereotype that the youth of this time aren't informed at all and have no idea what's going on in their own backyard. Well, I can say that even the biggest believer of this would have changed his minds after listening to the questions the students asked Kivela about.
The questions ranged from abortion to the wolf hunt to how safe the Eagle Mine is. I could tell that the students really knew what these issues when they would ask follow up questions to his answers. The students kept the event interesting and I'm glad that they know so much about local issues.
I have to admit that when I was a high school student I had no idea what was going on in my small village of Farwell, Mich. Granted there were only about 600 people in my hometown, so if something big was happening everyone knew about it. But has a teenager I was lucky to even know who the mayor was, and the only reason I knew who he was was because the mayor was my freshman math teacher.
I didn't start becoming informed about local issues until college when I decided to go into journalism. Working at the local and college newspaper did kind of help with that. So I'm proud and happy to know that today's youth is a lot more informed than when I was their age.
Adelle Whitefoot can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 243. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.