In a word, YES!
Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary defines democracy as follows:
Main Entry: de·moc·ra·cy
Pronunciation: \di-ˈmä-krə-sē\ Function: noun Inflected Form(s): plural de·moc·ra·cies
Etymology: Middle French democratie, from Late Latin democratia, from Greek dēmokratia, from dēmos + -kratia -cracy
1 a : government by the people; especially : rule of the majority b : a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections.
That’s us, right? Sometimes, but 6 times out of 10, the answer is no.
The Presidential Primary on February 5th 2008 had higher voter participation than previous primaries; however it still demonstrates the lack of a majority. The Bay Area was above average in terms of percentages for the state.
County Eligible Voters Actual Votes Cast % of Eligible
Alameda 975,263 428,930 43.98%
Contra Costa 691,629 318,224 46.01%
Marin 180,129 108,726 60.36%
Napa 90,558 44,437 49.07%
San Francisco 592,185 269,212 45.46%
San Mateo 474,415 211,697 44.62%
Santa Clara 1,101,684 457,692 41.54%
Solano 270,071 108,973 40.35%
Sonoma 330,131 176,148 53.36%
The days of having the best candidate or a good proposition for the people have been replaced. Now, the political consultants of today focus candidates advertising dollars and volunteer efforts specifically to voters that show up consistently to the polls. If the general public can be manipulated enough through misinformation, it then becomes possible to have a particular demographic show up to the polls in disproportionate numbers and throw an election. It’s no longer about having the best candidate; it’s about having the best election team and the most money.
We need to take our democracy back. The ONLY way that can be accomplished is by showing up to the polls. Get everyone in your house and all your neighbors to register. Shuttle everybody back and forth to the polling place throw a non-partisan party on Election Day. Most importantly, SHOW UP TO VOTE!