Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Voters are Stupid

Okay, so that statement isn't necessarily true on a blanket level. But Ward 8 D.C. residents leave a lot to be desired.

Marion Barry as been pretty much been reelected to the D.C. Council after a break from politics. Mr. Barry won the Ward 8 democratic primaries, ousting incumbent Sandy Allen from the post. (Seeing as Ward 8 is heavily democratic, it's unlikely he won't win the general election now.) Ms. Allen has been gracious about her defeat, stating that she will continue to represent the city, but then just lost an election to Marion Barry. That must be quite humiliating.

Backing up a bit: Mr. Barry was elected to the very post (Ward 8 Councilmember) in 1992 after having done prison time stemming from his arrest (based on videotape evidence) that he was doing crack in a hotel. Yes, the voters decided a crackhead would make a good person for political office.

As if this weren't enough, Mr. Barry eventually ascended to the position of Mayor of the nation's capital. Although I was already living in DC at the time, I was still in school, and still wasn't voting in the District: I disclaimed any affiliation with my neighbors for their idiocy.

Mr. Barry's tenure as mayor was a rocky one. Even though he served three terms (why did the voters keep re-electing him???), he never could quite dog the federal drug charges and perjury issues. Moreover, internet sites and other common lore started chronicling a history of Dan Quayle-like verbal mis-steps. (To be fair, many of these quotes appear to lack documented sources, although the lack of on-the-record quotes isn't really dispositive on the issue.)

This kind of voting pattern makes me wonder about our wonderful voting system. We've given power to everyone, including the most misinformed, misguided people in the country. If voters can't critically analyze a candidate, we truly do deserve exactly what we get.

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