Election integrity is fundamental to our freedoms

As I was re-reading last week’s issue of The Smoky Mountain News and about the Juneteenth celebrations in the mountains, I started thinking about the upcoming July 4 holiday and of the freedoms Americans take for granted. As a white man I won’t presume to know what Juneteenth means to Black Americans, but there’s little doubt that their experience of being an American is much different from mine. 

Scrapping Electoral College could stop a tyrant

By Martin Dyckman • Guest Columnist | During the Spanish Civil War, which the Fascists won, one of their generals said there was a “fifth column” inside Madrid that would capture the capital before any of their four advancing formations could reach the city. Ever since, the phrase has stood for any group of disloyal people aiming to subvert their own country.

Let’s eliminate the power of the Electoral College

By Martin A. Dyckman • Guest Columnist

Americans are asking why we now have a president whom they wouldn’t trust to manage their finances, teach their children or date their daughters. The answer, of course, is the Electoral College, which was created mainly to protect us from just such a person as Donald Trump.

That’s usually said in a resigned tone of voice, as if there’s nothing that can be done to prevent another such dysfunction. In fact, the Electoral College can be reduced to a figurehead formality in an amazingly simple way. That’s by state legislatures enacting a compact to cast their electoral votes for whichever candidate wins the popular vote nationwide. It’s alive, if not well, in North Carolina in the form of Senate Bill 440. I’ll get back to that.

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