To the editor:
With 14 states presently, and many more deliberating, destroying democracy due to the pretense of false allegations of voter fraud during the most secure election ever, it’s a good time to ponder just how undemocratic our country really is and always was, given such lofty aspirational ideals.
While our Founding Fathers, and they were only fathers, were inspired by philosophers, Greeks and Native Americans to exalted conceptions and noble language, ultimately they were mere mortals unable to create a decent democratic republic or representative democracy.
Only white male landowners were allowed to vote; Black people were counted as only a fraction of a person for population purposes; senators were appointed, rather than elected; and even worse, small states were grossly over-represented in the Senate and Electoral College.
The judicial branch was entrusted to the executive and legislative, for better or worse. Tragically, the presidential election was rendered utterly undemocratic, doomed by the deliberately unfair Electoral College. Smaller state voters cast fractionally more than one vote, larger state less than one, while only in the perfectly populated state does one person cast one vote for president.
The founding fathers’ foibles are those of every other diverse group negotiating an agreement: The interests of number one will be looked out for first. Myriad interests from Maine to Georgia were thereby met and satisfied by a rudimentary republic form of government, a fledgling representative democracy of limited scope.
Thus, our experiment with democracy began by catering to the needs and desires of landowners, slave owners, and the moneyed — the upper crust of society, the haves. Hence, human nature trumped and compromised our founding ideals and diminished our democracy, whose slow expansion to the general population was fought and paid for with blood, sweat, tears, and lives.
Federal law in 1965 laid the foundation for an all-inclusive democracy, fragile and subject to implementation by hostile states and localities. Predictably, when the law was gutted 48 years later because racism had allegedly disappeared, within days racism reared its ugly head to restrict voting rights in multiple states. Old habits die hard.
Thus, our old habit of government of the haves, for the haves, and by the haves continues to plague us, even as another plague made manifest the oppression and injustice it spawns and historically elected a humble have-not to attend to have-not interests and concerns.
So, post-insurrection with sedition epidemic, we’re sacrificing democracy for just what?