, Gloucester, MA

July 1, 2013

Letter: How can so few care about our future?

Gloucester Daily Times

---- — To the editor:

So, 5,640 Gloucester voters thought the senatorial election was important enough for them to vote as they considered possible futures and expressed themselves.

Only later will we know if the majority was right, but this we know immediately: Too few of us care about our future.

When a minority of an electorate chooses a representative, a senator, or a president, it means the majority has abdicated its duty to all whose lives will be influenced by those elected officials.

There are many grievous flaws in how we support candidates generally, support their campaign expenses, and the questions asked by media in “debates” in those contests. More flaws exist in how we essentially force officials to expend time on fundraising instead of freeing them to read bills; we discourage debates within both Houses; we tolerate those who simply tell us what we want to hear instead of demanding to be told what we must hear.

No one should have been surprised by the shenanigans of the NSA and a possibly corrupt oversight court, yet most were. We have 538 people in the Senate and House who should have been telling us about that mess; instead, we had silence. Now, we hear outrage from the very people who were informed. What pernicious duplicity we suffer.

The worst flaw in our electoral process is an indolent electorate that always has an excuse for not paying attention, for not being involved, and for being unwilling to work at studying issues.

We have had five elections in seven years. Instead of a growing enthusiasm to work for our democracy and the common good we claim to cherish, we have expressions of apathy to tedium, with occasional side trips to monotony and ennui.

I salute all contenders for office and wish each well. They cared enough to try to make a difference. I salute all who worked to inform and motivate the electorate. They, too, cared enough to try to make a difference.

To you, I give my deep appreciation and gratitude.