Monday, December 5, 2016

“Democracy, Meh?” ↦

The New York Times recently reported on a troubling statistic:

Across numerous countries, including Australia, Britain, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden and the United States, the percentage of people who say it is “essential” to live in a democracy has plummeted, and it is especially low among younger generations.

FiveThirtyEight posted a quick take on the survey that prompted that article:

First, the bad news: That data is legitimate, and it fits with research other pollsters have done on the millennial generation — loosely defined as everybody born from 1980 to 1997. …

That said, this isn’t exactly the same thing as millennials not liking democracy or clamoring for a dictator, Taylor said[.] … “By any metric, government has performed badly” over the last 20 years, he told me. Millennials have come of age in a time when our democratic government has been characterized by gridlock, partisanship, ineffectiveness and resistance to change.

20 years of gridlock is too much. That’s long enough to know that occasionally voting in different Republicans and different Democrats is not going to fix things, as that has happened over those years. We need more. We need to change how we vote, not just who we vote for.