Thursday, December 8, 2016

What Are the Moral Obligations of Citizens as Voters in Our 21st Century Democracy?

1. Monarchs believed God had given them the right to rule absolutely. Today monarchs rule by right of royal prerogative, limited by constitutions and democratically elected bodies/parliaments.(notes a and b below)

2. Instead in our Democracy the citizen, also limited and granted freedoms and rights by constitution and Bill of Rights has the moral responsibility whether God given or not to vote responsibly for those who will rule in his/her name.  What do philosophy and the humanities have to say about the moral obligations of rule by monarchs versus the people’s obligations in voting in a democracy? (See notes c through g below)

3. I maintain that in the immediately past election approximately 62 million voters did not vote responsibly, and cast their ballots for an Alt-right (reads White Supremacist/Neo-Nazi aided in the election by a foreign power and fake news) candidate and many of these voters continue to listen to and read fake news and act irresponsibly. (fake news "h" in notes below)

4. So, I ask what is the responsibility of the approximately 65 million citizens who voted responsibly and did not vote for the White Supremacist/Neo-Nazi candidate?

5. What about the millions of citizens that didn’t bother to vote in the election? Do the actual voters have a responsibility to make law that requires and penalizes voters who do not vote?

Notes

a. “The Divine Right of Kings,” New World Encyclopedia, http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Divine_Right_of_Kings. L ast modified on 17 October 2008, at 10:11 GT, viewed 10:51 EST, Thursday, December 8, 2016

b. “Royal Prerogative,” Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_prerogative. last modified on 19 November 2016, at 01:42., viewed 11:02, Thursday, December 8, 2016

c. “What Does it Mean To Be a Citizen In a Democracy? Ohio literacy Network, at http://literacy.kent.edu/Oasis/Resc/Educ/saintro.html. Last Updated: 09/23/2016 11:34:2, viewed 11:08 PM, Thursday, December 8, 2016.

d. Gregorian, Vartan, “American Voters Are Responsible For Protecting Democracy,” Time Magazine. http://time.com/4554937/citizen-responsibility-democracy-tocqueville/. November 2, 2016, viewed, Thursday, 11:15 PM, December 8, 2016.

e. De Tocqueville, Alexis, Democracy in America Translated by Henry Reeve, Esq. With an Original Preface and Notes by John C. Spencer. New York: Adlard and Saunders, 1838. xxx, 464 pp. Reprinted 2003 by The Lawbook Exchange, Ltd. LCCN 2002025957. ISBN 1-58477-249-2.

f. “The Ethics of Voting,” The Art of Theory: a Journal of Scholarly Conversation” at http://www.artoftheory.com/the-ethics-of-voting/. Except where noted, all materials freely distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. Viewed 11:27 PM EST, Thursday, December 8, 2016.

g. “Voting as an Ethical Issue,” Princeton University Press, (pdf) http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/i9464.pdf. Except where noted, all materials freely distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. Viewed and saved, 11:30 PM EST, Thursday, December 8, 2016

h. "Fake News Website," Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fake_news_website. Last modified 4:10 GMT, December 9, 2016. viewed 11:38 PM EST, Thursday, December 8, 2-16)

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