If despotism failed only for want of a capable, benevolent despot, what chance has democracy, which requires a whole population of capable voters?
-- George Bernard Shaw
That's the intro and the question asked by Kenneth Kid in today's Toronto Star (What Really Counts). Ken's thought provoking op-ed studies the possible reasons behind low voter turnouts and asks:
He examines several possible reasons for our apathy, and uncovers some worrying trends:
There is clearly a lot to examine on this issue. For myself, I have some sympathy for Ken's ideas. I remember feeling uneasy about jury duty and watching a documentary where a killer got off just because of one juror failed to properly understand the evidence. It's not enough to say "you must go out and vote". We need to do more to ensure that we are all properly informed and engaged, so that our vote actually counts for something.
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