The statements made by the Republican candidates depend heavily on the fact that you don’t know the facts. They talk about global warming, contraception, energy policy and our stand off with Iran, depending on the fact that you are unaware of the facts. Facts are the enemy of ignorance. Without them, ignorance is a very powerful tool. A tool that the Republican candidates use everyday in their campaigns.
Jefferson said democracy is dependent on an informed electorate. He was aware of the power of ignorance hundreds of years ago. The move towards a universal public education was in fact an important step in the development of democracy. The ability to read and conceptualize are vital to making informed decisions on the issues of the day. Every American who learns to read and takes the time to learn about the issues takes a bite out of the power of ignorance. But it is difficult to find the time to learn all that there is to learn and read all that there is to read to be truly informed. Most of us just listen to what the candidates or the TV personality that we trust says and vote accordingly. When we do that, we allow the power of ignorance to win.
The right to vote is one that has been fought for and died for by Americans over the past nearly three centuries. The democracy that one act represents is yearned for by millions around the world. When we do not take the time to learn the facts before we vote we denigrate that right, and allow the power of ignorance to dictate the decisions that place individuals in a position of power. We allowed that to happen in 2010, let’s not make the same mistake again. Challenge the Republican candidates to back up their rants with facts. Defeat the power of ignorance.