Republicans have built their reputation on suppressing the vote as of late, but now they have come up with a novel position that many on the left should get excited about.
Although it is not clear exactly who first said “The cornerstone of democracy rests on the foundation of an educated electorate,” it is generally attributed to Founding Father Thomas Jefferson. However, when Jefferson said it, if he did say it, he was promoting education, not a means of suppressing the vote like Republicans are as of late
About a week ago it was reported that “Republicans say ignorant people shouldn’t vote;” as if people of color and left-leaning voters are ignorant of the issues. One thing is certain, if ignorant people were denied the right to vote Republicans would never win another election.
Most people who observe and comment on politics and election results are well aware that there is no voting bloc as ignorant of the issues and dependably vote against their own best self interests than Republicans’ base of support.There are myriad reasons why that is the case, but it is not a failure of the education system like some contend, and it is not because the typical GOP voter is denied access to the issues.
It is fundamentally because Republican voters exist to be frightened by Republican politicians who propagate all manner of lies about what Democrats will do if they are elected.What really reveals just how stupid Republican voters really are is that no matter how often Democrats are elected and do not take away guns, do not burn down churches, do not force evangelicals to get abortions and eat fetuses, or do not crucify white people en masse, the GOP base still believes they are doomed if they don’t vote for a Republican. Donald Trump even knew his base of support was stupid and reveled in telling them.
One of the primary reasons Republicans and their conservative smart guys claim the ignorant shouldn’t vote is because they are “civics-illiterate” and that is certainly true regarding their base of support. Add to that Republican voters, like Republican candidates, have no interest in “civics” or the “community good.” Over at the conservative outlet National Review, Andrew McCarthy said:
“It would be far better if the [voting] franchise were not exercised by ignorant, civics-illiterate people”
Mississippi’s Republican Secretary of State, Michael Watson “warned of the dangers of voting by the uninformed.”
It isn’t just conservative pundits and Republican politicians questioning whether “ignorant” people should be allowed to vote, The religious extremist sitting on the Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett holds the view that no American has a universal personal right to vote. She said as much in a dissenting opinion while serving as an appeals court judge when she claimed that “voting is a civic right belonging not to all citizens, but only to virtuous citizens who exercise it for the benefit of the community.”
If that were the case no Republican would ever be elected simply because they have no interest whatsoever in any policy that is “for the benefit of the community” any more than Republican voters have an iota of crap to give about policies that benefits the community. They are too terrified some Democrat is going to take their guns, burn down their churches, ban their bible, or force them to eat freshly aborted fetuses.
If Republican voters were informed or civic minded, they would not be so stupid to vote against their own economic interests and well-being. Even when Republicans campaign on denying their constituents’ access to free or affordable health care, unemployment benefits, food and housing assistance or access to clean air and water – idiots still vote Republican. Only an moron would vote against their self-interests and yet Republican voters struggling to survive in the poorest states consistently vote for Republicans.
Republicans do not want an informed or educated populace because they would be exposed as liars, fear mongers, and scam artists like Trump. Trump only received the number of votes he did because he is as civics-illiterate as his base with no interest in anything that was a benefit to the community or the nation.
If Republicans want to deny the right to vote to the ignorant and uninformed then they should start with their supporters in their own states. As them, for example, to name the three branches of government. According to several studies, 22 percent of Americans are unable to name even one branch of government and 75 percent of Americans can’t name all three branches. It is not, as some conservatives claim, due to a failing of the public education system, because that is taught in every public and private school in the nation several times over 12 years of education.
It is noteworthy that except for recently, Republicans haven’t dared publicly call for denying the vote to people they consider ignorant and without an ounce of virtue. It is likely that Republicans really mean that those who don’t support Republican candidates are ignorant and non-virtue.
One is mystified why there is not more media coverage of yet another GOP machination to suppress the vote, but it is likely that doing so will just inflame the ignorant and non-virtuous against the free press more than they already are. Or they will believe outlets like Fox News that will claim Republicans meant only Democratic-leaning voters are ignorant and without virtue with no regard for policies benefitting the community. The sad truth is that Fox News viewers, and Republicans’ base, are so inherently stupid they will believe it even while Democrats are doing everything for the people’s benefit.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.