Our greatest civic ritual

What in the history of mankind would make you think that such a thing was possible?

This year my polling place was across the street from my apartment. Nice, I thought. I showed up at 6:05am wearing a pullover and no coat, expecting to be in and out. It turns out that they had five voting booths and a line that went on for blocks. There was a guy ahead of me in line wearing a gorilla suit. His vote counts the same as mine. It was 40 degrees out. An election official named Ron propped the door open just as I got inside, creating a nice wind tunnel, making it even colder indoors than out. Thanks for that, Ron. Eighty minutes later, I am back at home writing this while trying to unthaw.

Good God, I love Election Day.

Aristotle conceived of politics in a democracy as citizens gathering in the public square to collectively determine how we ought to order our life together. As is often misunderstood, however, we do not live in a democracy. We live in a republic, where the people decide who gets to make the decisions. And so every four years we have Election Day. We decide who will, in the immortal words of George W. Bush, be the decider.

Read the full article at The American.

Michael R. Strain is a research fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.

 

Also Visit
AEIdeas Blog The American Magazine
About the Author

 

Michael R.
Strain

What's new on AEI

Defeating ISIS: AEI experts weigh-in before the president’s address on Wednesday
image Degrading, defeating, and destroying the Islamic State
image Wealth Building Home Loan: Building wealth through homeownership and retirement savings
image The $3 iPhone
AEI on Facebook
Events Calendar
  • 15
    MON
  • 16
    TUE
  • 17
    WED
  • 18
    THU
  • 19
    FRI
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 | 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
The Constitution as political theory

Please join us for the third-annual Walter Berns Constitution Day Lecture as James Ceasar, Harry F. Byrd Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia, explores some of the Constitution’s most significant contributions to political theory, focusing on themes that have been largely unexamined in current scholarship.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014 | 8:10 a.m. – Thursday, September 18, 2014 | 1:30 p.m.
Third international conference on housing risk: New risk measures and their applications

We invite you to join us for this year’s international conference on housing risk — cosponsored by the Collateral Risk Network and AEI International Center on Housing Risk — which will focus on new mortgage and collateral risk measures and their applications.

Thursday, September 18, 2014 | 2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Speaker of the House John Boehner on resetting America’s economic foundation

Please join us as Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) delivers his five-point policy vision to reset America’s economy.

Friday, September 19, 2014 | 9:15 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Reforming Medicare: What does the public think?

Please join us as a panel of distinguished experts explore the implications of the report and the consumer role in shaping the future of Medicare.

No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.