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A paragraph I do not really comprehend

Yet if 16 and 17-year-olds are to be given the vote, the uncertainties about their effects suggest the proposal be justified on principled terms rather than its potential effects on turnout.

 

thanks you in advance

 

 

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the uncertainties about their effects suggest the proposal be justified on principled terms

---->  what does it mean?

Also with turnout in mind, the consultation contains proposals for piloting alternative forms of voting.

 

There is another sentence and I do not understand how "turnout" interpret here.

 

This is only part of the sentence, or at least the thought. It starts with "yet" which is a negation of what came before. I would like to see what came before with this please. 

 

Turnout is how many people come out to the poles to vote. 

This matters beyond Scotland. Two of the three main parties at Westminster – Labour and the Liberal Democrats – have publicly stated their support for votes at 16. It can be argued that Scottish practice with the referendum has been driving broader debate on this issue. Yet if 16 and 17-year-olds are to be given the vote, the uncertainties about their effects suggest the proposal be justified on principled terms rather than its potential effects on turnout.

 

abstracted from

 

http://theconversation.com/pay-attention-to-scotlands-voting-age-debate-it-could-be-heading-south-29193

 

Ok. Thanks. 

 

I am not a lawyer so perhaps I'm not the one to analyze this sentence for you. Principled terms I think is a phrase used in law. It seems like a term that legal writing uses frequently enough, yet there is no definition that I was able easily to find and copy here for you. 

 

I'll try to write out somthing simplified that is my closest guess as to the meaning:

 

If 16 and 17-year-olds are to be given the vote it's uncertain what the effects will be. This suggests that the proposal should be analyzed based upon the intangible qualities that could be of benefit (it should be evaluated on principle) rather than the actual number of people that show up to vote. 

 

 

 

An example of evaluating this on principle could be perhaps in a country where 17 year olds serve as soldiers, can get married and have children and drink and drive and can live separately from parents they "should" also be allowed to vote on what happens to them in these circumstances. On principle, how can you send someone to war when they cannot vote on policies that send them off to war. There are many reasons that could be argued on principle that giving younger people the right to vote could be of benefit to society. I think the author is saying that the other reasons other than the tangible number of votes should used to evaluate whether or not the younger people get to vote rather than just a desire to increase the number of people voting because there is no way to know what the result will be when they come to vote. You don't even know IF they will come to vote and what they would vote for so you need to judge it more on why you think that it is correct, right for the younger people to have the vote based on principle.

I hope that I'm right and that I made it more clear for you. That's a doozy of a sentence for someone just learning English to have to figure out and even a challenge for an English speaker with no legal background.

Maybe someone with a legal background can chime in here and tell me if my guess was correct?

 

Hello Allen:   Let's  look at:   Yet if 16 and 17-year-olds are to be given the vote, the uncertainties about their effects suggest the proposal be justified on principled terms rather than its potential effects on turnout.

 

 One of the techniques for analysis, is to study it backwards, beginning with the last phrase.

 

"rather than its potential effects on turnout." = the potential effects on "turnout"  are that there will be many more voters in an election.     So,  what the sentence indicates is that "rather than" the chance that some politician  will get more votes,  there should be a better reason (principle, idea, etc.) why

younger voters should be allowed.

 

   "the proposal be justified on principled terms"  =  there should be a better reason for passing into law,  the right for 16 year olds to vote, besides the fact that some popular  young candidate will get most of the youth vote.  Is there a clear, objective reason  why the 16 year olds   should be granted the right to vote? 

 

 (continued)

 

  

 

"the uncertainties about their effects suggest" = nobody knows what youth would really do, given the right to vote. Will they, for example, propose that the first hour of every day in public school be used to study the lyrics of Rock N Roll songs? Will youthful voters propose that Sex Education classes involve watching explicit videos on the Internet? Will youthful voters demand exemption from military service? Will youthful voters demand some sort of government subsidy for their first home purchase?

There are all possible proposals by Youthful Voters.

 

"Yet if 16 and 17-year-olds are to be given the vote" =   this is obviously the main idea,  prior to the sentence   construction  as  more complex.

 

"suggest the proposal be justified on principled terms rather than its potential effects on turnout."----

 

  Looking at this again,   it can be considered that some "principle"  be identified, that will justify allowing  a   lowering of the voting age.

 

 For exmple,  if I were endorsing  the passage of a law, that  would lower the voting age to 16,  I might use this for my principle (main) justification:

 

============================================

 

   Many young people are growing up   with feelings of alienation  from their own democratic government.  Young people do not care to learn about  their government. They say that their government is corrupt and full of nepotism.  They say their government does not

really care about "the people".   It is necessary to lower the voting age  to get the citizen  to trust their government, and to become a part of the democratic process.  Otherwise,  we will develop entirely into a nation of  "lost people," alienated from a   "ruling class".

 

   =============================================

 

   Such an essay would serve as some sort of "principle" or justification for lowering the voting age.

Hi, Dorothy

 

Thank you very much especially your rephrasing and sprawling interpretation.

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