From: Dick Gallien
Dear Judge Dennis Challeen, I enjoy your observations, but wonder about your conclusion in “The psychology of the political mind” that the voter decides “whether it is time for a change or time to hang on to the tried and proven. Wisdom is to know when..”
It seems another factor besides wisdom is involved and should/could it be corrected? Minnesota has had a 77 percent voter turnout in the last few presidential elections, highest in the nation, but fewer bother to vote in mid-term elections, Winona County having only a 39 percent turnout, lowest in the state. Did we lose our wisdom?
The Australian cost and test for citizenship is very low and easy. All citizens must vote — voting is mandatory — you are fined if you don’t vote, you go before the court if you refuse to pay the fine and a criminal conviction may be recorded against you. There is easy access to voting booths, including in hospitals and prisons. Elections are always on Saturdays. My wife was in labor in an Australian hospital and the midwife brought her a ballot. What a contrast to our elected officials who make voting as difficult as possible. What are they afraid of?
Is our national apathy partly a result of having the freedom of whether to bother voting for those who ultimately control our freedom?