Letter to the Editor

Great Letters to the Editor

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Thanks to our local papers for providing a venue for people concerned about their government who are willing to take time to make their thoughts known. A recent piece “Dark Money” dealt with benefits being afforded so the super-rich get their way and the dictatorial order by President Trump to fire rockets on Syria without congressional approval. Thanks Ray for your thoughtful note!

A second writer seems to think today’s electoral system, which embraces the Electoral College, in use since the inception of our country, is a great system for our 21st century presidential elections. History tells us that the Electoral College system, which applies only to presidents, not governors, was employed for three basic reasons. 1. Our country had just been freed from the dictatorial power of England. However, there were many citizens that supported the monarchy causing fear by the founding fathers that if the country’s leader was selected by a direct vote, a monarchist could swing a popular vote. 2. It balanced the influence of smaller states. 3. The country in the 1700s was basically rural and news traveled slowly. There was concern that the populace would not be well enough informed to vote based on issues. How much of this is of concern in today’s U.S.? I would say not much! Never the less, it is the law of our land and is extremely difficult to change. It would require a constitutional amendment ratified by two-thirds of the states. Not surprisingly there are many that think it is time to make the effort for change.

The words “used since the inception of our country” as validation of the system falls far short for me. At the inception of our country: Slavery was the law of the land, only land owning white men could vote. Women could not vote, blacks could not vote. In time constitutional amendments were made and ratified to meet the times. I think it’s time again.

— Robert Sneitzer, Spirit Lake