Letter: Voting is not necessarily the answer


According to the op-ed article titled, “Be involved, or be quiet” (Anastasia Niedrich, July 16), the only way to change our government is to vote. I wish it were that simple. If voting works so well, why is it that our Congressmen and women (not to mention our feckless leaders in the State Capitol) never seem to carry out promises made to voters to gain support? Niedrich is right on one point: Money does talk in politics, which is why lobbyists get what they want. And we wonder why nothing seems to improve when the House majority changes.

Which brings up another point — our two-party system.

If you think being a Democrat in Utah is aggravating, try being any other party, or independent. At least the Democrats have a representative in Washington.

Thomas Jefferson said in order for a democracy to be effective, it requires a revolution every ten years. I don’t think he meant a bloody one, but if our elected officials are not listening, it is our right as their bosses to fire them. Democracy also requires informed citizens, I agree, but “informed” does not mean “to conform.”

This two-party system divides families and communities into either/or groups, which does not allow for constructive dialogue between the two — such as the childish bickering among elected leaders. Since the two-party system is not working, we need to change it.

Also, there is the most obvious proof that voting is not effective: our electoral college, which decided in 2000 that Bush was president instead of Gore, although the popular vote decided the other way around.

You can vote all you want, but how many Utahns does it take to equal California’s voting power? The answer is 17.

Anne-Berit SheppardSenior, English and Art

Justin CampbellJunior, Music Education