Archived Opinion

Elections must remain open and honest

Elections must remain open and honest

To the Editor:

Martin Luther King Jr. always believed “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” Half a century later, would he be as convinced? I’m not so sure.

America’s tolerance of dishonesty, lying and unethical behavior over several decades has been exceeded only by our willingness to plunge ever deeper into the abyss of stomach-churning abhorrent practices.

It’s no longer deniable the United States has squandered its long-held reputation as the world’s foremost constitutional government to become (unmistakably) an anocracy. Anocracies are governments neither entirely democratic or autocratic; they’re something in between. Referred to sometimes as “partial democracies” or “Illiberal democracies,” it’s in anocracies that most civil wars occur.

Barbara Walter (professor of political science, University of California, San Diego) states: “The January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol was a window into what has been brewing beneath the surface of the United States for years.”

Over a year ago, former President Donald Trump called Georgia Secretary of State, Brad Raffensperger, and brazenly asked him to “find 11,780 votes” and give him Georgia’s electoral votes. That phone conversation became public knowledge, we all heard it with our own ears.

Also, over a year has passed and the former president hasn’t been held accountable for his improprieties. In a strong, healthy democracy, a government is transparent, is also well-conditioned to be accountable to its citizens and has the ability to manage a change in administrations without experiencing civil unrest.

The reason the U.S. is on the verge of becoming a full-blown dictatorship is because we have lost the will to abide by our own Constitution, to follow fundamental rules of law and the basic tenets which define democracies; commitment to the people’s welfare, to govern by consensus and to maintain a high regard for solidarity among our citizens.  

Instead, we indulged a president who led an insurrection against his own government, incited a deadly attack on our Congress and our Capitol with the clear intent to overturn an election and, all the while, seeking help from a foreign government (an adversary), and with the blessing of the Grand Old Party, attempted to block the legitimate constitutional transfer of power.

We may well be the world’s most powerful nation, but with men like Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell, Kevin McCarthy and numerous other Republicans willing to feed off Trump’s “Big Lie,” we are burdened with an inept, dysfunctional Congress which makes us look, to the world, like a banana republic.

We are living in dangerous times. Countries least expected to experience a civil war — such as the United States and the United Kingdom — are showing unambiguous signs of unrest.

To regain the trust of the American people in government and institutions, policies enacted in state capitols and Washington, D.C., have to ensure all Americans are allowed to vote and that all votes count. Americans also need the assurance that our government serves and represents all of us, not just the rich, the powerful and the famous.

David L. Snell  

Franklin

Leave a comment

3 comments

  • Well said, Sir, and thank you for the new word.

    posted by Deni Gottlieb

    Saturday, 05/07/2022

  • Remain? US elections have not been open and honest for a long time. The introduction of electronic systems have made it far easier to engage in vote and the fraud in the last presidential election was massive. The Jnauary 6th "riot" (which was staged by a very small number of people on the left as infiltrators in a peaceful protest of the election steal), is an indication of what is in store if the election integrity issue is not solved. If the left is not co0ntroled soon, the end of the country is in view, and it will be violent as the left will not go peacefully into the night they have set the stage for.

    posted by Quartermaster

    Thursday, 05/05/2022

  • David Snell... your opinions smell! Just wanted you to know that. Have a nice day.

    posted by Lucille Josephs

    Thursday, 05/05/2022

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