I just finished voting, and as I was left with the idea above. Basically:
I think you’ve basically forfeited the right to an opinion by being too lazy to participate.
There are people who don’t vote for good reasons:
Kids don’t vote because they’re not capable
Dead people don’t vote because they’re dead
People in comas don’t vote because they’re unconscious
If you’re alive, and over 18 (and definitely over 25), and you don’t vote, the reason is usually one of the following:
Great, so you’ve decided that you want to be treated exactly like a child. That’s what we call someone who either doesn’t make decisions or isn’t responsible for those that they do make.
People who don’t pay attention to the news or politics are like unpatched IoT devices. They’re dormant weapons, waiting to be used by someone with an agenda. Unsurprisingly, they’re really dangerous in numbers.
The next time I hear someone express that they have ZERO opinions on politics and current events, because they pay ZERO attention to any of it, I’m going to respond in hostile fashion. I’m working on some lines:
Do you have a superhero lunchpail to take lunch to work?
What’s your favorite kind of sippy cup?
What’s it like to have adults decide everything for you?
This is offensive. It’s rude. And it’s not like me to be that way.
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Our nation ONLY WORKS if the people are paying attention and have opinions. They can be bad opinions. Dumb opinions. But at least care enough to care.
People who are this clueless about the world need to be scolded when they suddenly do muster an opinion about something. Oh, you’re upset because the world’s not working perfectly for you anymore? That’s tough. Those are grown-up issues, though. Maybe learn the three branches of government and then you can run your mouth.
Nothing about you makes you deserving of respect on matters of how the world is run other than being informed and participating in the process. I don’t care about your gender, or how much money you have, or that you’re a business owner, or that you own land, or that you are from a rich family.
If you have consciously chosen to have no opinions on important topics you have largely abstained from being taken seriously. Sippy cups it is.
We can’t force people to engage, but maybe shame can help.
Maybe not. Maybe it’ll make it worse. It’s just an idea. I’m willing to try anything at this point.
A republic cannot survive like this.
I make an exception for those who are quite informed and care a great deal, but who (incorrectly I believe) feel that voting doesn’t matter. They’re not apathetic; they simply feel the system has failed and that voting is not the method by which change can be made. Having millions of people believe that would actually be an upgrade from what we have today. At least they care.