Saturday, October 04, 2008

Sorry Thomas, facts do not matter...

I have to honestly admit, some of the people I share citizenship with in this nation of ours scare me. When I read pieces like the one written by Thomas Sowell, Do Facts Matter, the answer is a resounding no. It's not just related to presidential politics, a good number of those who vote really have no clue and do not take their vote responsibly.

I'm not talking about people who are overly partisan, I'm talking about the average American who barely watches the news or reads much of the news that bases their opinion on short sound bites or campaign advertising rather than based on facts.

Time and time again I'll start talking with someone about one issue or another, and I'll raise a point, to which they respond, "I didn't know that." Yet, without knowing that they've made up their minds?

One recent example, we have a casino issue on the ballot here in Ohio, Issue 6, where if approved only one casino will be able to operate in the whole State of Ohio and the dollar amount of revenue promised decreases if any of the current Indian Tribes trying to open Casino's wins their efforts. The ad wars on this issue have both sides using misinformation, every single person I've talked to in person about this issue did not realize that by voting for this ballot issue any other casino opening anywhere else in the State would be illegal and would require that ballot issue to be repealed. Most of them state, "I think we should have a Casino here and it's about time, so that's why I'm supporting Issue 6." When you then tell them what will really happen? They are dumbfounded...

Frankly, I'm not a fan of casinos, so for those that never want one up here, the smart vote would be yes on Issue 6 but I have a problem with one part of the state dictating what the rest can do. We keep pushing people to vote, yet I really have to wonder, if they don't have the motivation to vote on their own or to be informed, how are we really making our republic better?

3 comments:

Alex said...

The very question, "Do facts matter?", is telling of our current climate. Imagine a democracy in which the question "Do facts matter?" would be considered for what it is: absurd on its face.

Lisa Renee said...

True, part of the problem seems to be those who do care don't even know who to believe anymore.

Perhaps the next debate should include a hook up to a lie detector test...or some administration of truth serum.

Alex said...

Good idea. Although the time consumed with the many pauses signaling "Lie!" would leave the candidates time for perhaps three questions.