Time to go to direct democracy

Re: Federal election

We have the right, every so often, to elect a dictator of our choice in Canada. Yet we call this democracy. Isn’t it time for direct democracy?

At one time it was impossible for all citizens of this, the best country in the world, to gather each day and decide issues that affected the entire country. So we elected politicians to represent us to the government. This is called representative democracy. How is this working for you?

Today, through the Internet, we can gather to make those decisions. Even the most poor among us could, if they chose, go to a public library for free Internet access. We don’t need MPs, MPPs and city councils to decide things for us. If you truly believe in democracy (which is the rule of the majority) you will have to agree with me that direct democracy is the answer. The alternative is to continue having people we don’t even know, and who we didn’t even vote for, “represent” us in Ottawa.

Someone mentioned to me once that this would be the end of the secret ballot, and they were worried that everyone would know how we vote. I agree this would be the end of secrecy. The reason for the secret ballot in the first place is so the person elected to “represent” you doesn’t know who you voted for. This would hopefully keep that person from deciding not to help you when you need assistance from your “representative.” In direct democracy, you don’t have to keep your vote secret to protect yourself, as you no longer have a representative to deal with.

I can see pitfalls regarding direct democracy, but surely they all can be overcome if there are proper checks and balances in place to ensure that the will of the people actually is respected. Again, the alternative is that we continue to elect dictators of our choice. Which do you prefer?

It feels much better getting this off of my chest. I hope I don’t get arrested for my subversive words, though. Who among you thinks politicians will give up their perks without some kind of fight?

Mike Kennedy, Hamilton