Lisbon campaign: “Our age group is more independent-minded and willing to question authority…”

This one’s been sitting in the jug since yesterday, when Mary Fitzgerald wrote about one of the most disaffected groups by age in last year’s Lisbon referendum, when:

55 per cent of those aged 18-24 voted No, and 45 per cent Yes. In the 25-34 year age group, the No vote was even more pronounced: 59 per cent against, 41 per cent who voted Yes.

According to the latest Irish Times opinion poll it is only the 18-24 age group that has remained resolutely No… Andrew Byrne of GenerationYes (who put out the poster Pete blogged) had some interesting things to say about last year’s campaign:

“We know from research that this age group is not anti-European, in fact it’s the most pro-European of any age group,” he says. Byrne believes young people felt “disconnected” from last year’s Yes campaign.

“They were ignored last year. The campaign didn’t speak in their language and it didn’t use their media. If there’s a deeper issue at work here, it is perhaps a disconnect between the major political parties and younger people.

“I think there is a sense that our age group is perhaps more independent-minded than previous generations, and more willing to question authority.

“That’s a big difference in mindset, and may have perhaps fed into the whole anti-Government sentiment.”

OMG… A generation which can think for itself? That doesn’t take things on blind trust? That’s going to be a tough nut for the current political (and media) establishment to crack…

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty