Yesterday’s editorial in Sri Lanka’s Sunday Leader used harsh words to mourn the death of democracy in that country– “no longer a criticism or a warning, it is simply reality.” The ongoing tragedy of Sri Lanka, and the use of the conflict with the LTTE to dismantle democracy, is truly sad.
Yet much of what the editorial says is equally true of the United States. Sure, voter turnout in 2008 hit a 40-year high. But that high was only 57%. Just over half of eligible Americans were motivated enough to choose their new leader. In the mid-term elections of 2006, barely a third of Americans bothered to vote for their elected representatives.
But is that the fault of the electorate? Or, as the Leader argues in Sri Lanka, are we represented by a single party of corrupt cronies?