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  • Friday, November 12, 2004


    Worst Voter Error Is Apathy Toward Irregularities

    This is, to me, the core of the concern over miscounts. I don't really care whether investigation into the voting problems determines that Kerry actually won. I doubt that it will. I worry about the future of American democracy. If there is widespread doubt about whether the system works or not, participation in the process will go down. When people feel disempowered, they will turn to things that do make them feel empowered. That might not be such a bad thing, now that I think about it. But wouldn't riots be bad for business? Not that I'm suggesting such a thing. Not me. Nope. Voting good, rioting bad! From Worst Voter Error Is Apathy Toward Irregularities (
    "Informed that I was writing about voter disenfranchisement, a Democratic friend admitted, 'I'm trying not to care about that.' I understand. Less than two weeks after a bruising election in a nation in which it's unfashionable to overtly care about anything, it's annoying of me even to notice.

    But citizens who insist, election after election, that each vote is sacred and then shrug at hundreds of credible reports that honest-to-God votes were suppressed and discouraged aren't just being hypocritical.

    They're telling the millions who never vote because 'it doesn't matter anyway' that they're the smart ones. ....

    Much of the media dismisses anxiety over such irregularities as grousing by poor-loser Democrats, rabid conspiracy theorists and pouters frustrated by Kerry's lightning-quick concession. Some of it surely is.

    But more people's concerns are elementary-school basic -- which isn't coincidental since that's where many of us learned about democracy. We feel that Americans mustn't concede the noble intentions upon which our nation was founded to the cynical or the indifferent. We believe in our nation's sacred assurance that every citizen's voice be heard through his or her vote.

    The point isn't just which candidate won or lost. It's that we all lose when we ignore that thousands of Americans might have been discouraged or prevented from voting, or not had their votes count."

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