Tuesday, November 10, 2009
New Light Through Old Windows
In the late eighteenth century, America's Founding Fathers (salute) came together in Philly, declared the colony's independence from England, established a constitution and very possibly invented the cheese steak sandwich. The first two accomplishments are irrefutable facts.
We remember many of these Founding Fathers (there were no Founding Mothers, and this is an important fact as you will see directly) as literate men of property, education and creativity. Most of them were Christians--with the exception of a handful of the most influential--all of them were Caucasian and all of them wore silly pants, which were the rage at the time. Many wore wigs, a style that has pretty much faded away, except in some sectors of the entertainment business. These men clearly saw themselves as qualified to lead the country and to be selected and re-selected by voters who were similar to them: literate, educated, land-owning white men.
I suspect, that if the Founding Fathers were to learn that in today's America we encourage to vote anyone who is at least 18, can prove legal citizenship and can fog up a mirror, they would be horrified. Women voting? Nonsense. Negroes? You surely jest. Illiterate workers? Outrageous. Indians? Now you are just being silly.
The "All men are created equal" thing was limited to the aforementioned "men" and to a certain class of capable men, in other words, the Founding Father archetype.
Eschewing current political correctness, let me opine that our Founding Dads had a point. Wait, put down that rock and hear me out.
I strongly believe that citizens of the female persuasion, Blacks, Indians, non-property owners, laborers, et al, who were originally left out of the voting equality equation should be included, just as they are now. However, if any of these folks is a certifiable moron, I don't want them helping me select representatives or to run for office themselves. Moron inclusion is the standard now and it is a major contributor to the fact that we get a fair share of morons in state and federal legislative seats. The fact that we don't have effective moron screening as part of the voter or candidate registration process is unconscionable.
Let me be clear, I don't mean to denigrate morons and for those of you who are morons, "denigrate" means to "put down" or "to make fun of".
Seriously, we don't let people drive cars who can't pass the driver's test but we let people vote--no, we encourage people to vote--who know virtually nothing of the policies, implications and nuances of the issues at hand or the machinery and purposes of the three branches of government. Many of these voters likely don't have the capacity to be informed voters, much like some people can't safely merge onto a freeway. Both are dangerous types in their own special way.
There is a faint but growing wail building in the distance as the liberals amongst my readers began to understand my rather conservative take on voter's rights. My take is simple: an adult U.S. citizen has a right and duty to vote but only as long as there is some evidence that he or she has the mental capacity to think clearly and independently.
Along with the right to vote comes the obligation to be informed instead of merely influenced by those who would twist and spin the facts. If one is unable to think rationally for themselves, someone else will always be available to think for them, rationally or not. Based on much of what I see and read on the Internet, it's clear that some citizens, many of whom would probably make good next door neighbors and/or drinking companions, should be kept away from the polling station through threat of force because they are political and policy morons. Ergo, we get the government that we deserve.
Some may argue that I just don't want people voting or serving in office who do not agree with my personal political views. Au contraire. There is always room for disagreement and ideological differences between people of informed goodwill. For instance, I believe that the current proposed health care legislation is better than doing nothing, although it is far from being adequate to solve the problems of the system long term. Others, on the other hand, may think that an entirely different approach is the better way to go; I'm glad to hear them out, maybe even give their ideas a try. However, if you carry a sign showing corpses at Buchenwald and equate that horror to "Obama's health care solution", your right to vote or hold office should be immediately revoked because you are a moron.
I haven't solved the moron screening conundrum and so I can't provide a simple solution today. Perhaps science could invent a machine similar to a metal detector that emits a silent alarm when a moron passes through. It would be silent so that the moron not be unduly embarrassed. Surely they suffer enough embarrassment by routinely saying and doing moronic things, i.e., former Congressman and soon to be convicted scofflaw Tom DeLay appearing on Dancing with the Stars. A moron screening machine could have caught him before he even ran for Congress.
I will be interested in your thoughts and comments regarding voter and candidate registration moron screening. Be advised, if what you write is moronic, names and embedded cookie identifiers will be archived for possible future use.
Observoid of the Day: Willie Nelson is the son that Ozzie and Harriet never mentioned.