Don’t care? Stop pretending.

If I had all the money in the world, I would run a national ad campaign encouraging people not to vote.

People are apathetic about politics as a general rule. Chances are if they’re apathetic, they’re not paying attention. If they’re not paying attention, they shouldn’t be voting. It does not help democracy to get people excited about voting if they’re not excited about paying attention. This article appeared in the American Thinker a few days after I drew this cartoon, and it illustrates this point perfectly. Is brain surgery made better when everyone gets a chance to try it? Why is democracy any different?

Stirring up excitement for voting is not how it’s supposed to work. People are supposed to be excited about civic issues, and voting is supposed to be the natural result of that excitement. Being excited about the democratic process without caring about civics is like being excited about writing without caring about grammar and syntax. It might resemble the real thing, but what comes out is crap. If someone isn’t excited, they shouldn’t be going to the polls. When they’re steered there, it does nothing to help democracy. You might as well stick a bunch of monkeys in the booths.

Actually, the monkeys might end up making better decisions.

This ties in to the satellite voting issue that has gone on in Bloomington. Voting is easy enough if you care enough to put forth the effort. Register on time and show up on election day. If you can’t show up, fill out an absentee ballot. It’s not that hard. If you don’t care enough to do that, you don’t care enough to vote. People shouldn’t be pulled off the street and encouraged to care. They should just care. If they don’t, they should stay away. They aren’t helping.

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2 thoughts on “Don’t care? Stop pretending.

  1. What of the people who only care about politics because talking heads have convinced them that the apocalypse is coming unless they vote for Party X? What about the people who hold loyalty to a party because of arbitrary things such as family history? What about people who hold ideologies simply because they’ve been socially conditioned thusly as a function of their environment?
    There are A LOT of levels of political apathy that you don’t seem to want to touch on, and instead of trying to motivate people by showing them how the actions of their elected officials directly impact the lives of the seven billion or so people on this planet (to greater and lesser extents by office), you focus all of your energy into simply telling them not to vote.

  2. I’m not against people being educated. What I’m against is being told that voting is a civic duty. Being informed is a civic duty. If someone is truly ignorant, they’re not going to know they are, and there’s not much you can do about them (this description applies to most of the kinds of people you describe in your first paragraph). My message is to those people who KNOW that they don’t know as much as they should.

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