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Letters: Wanted -- smarter American voters

November 13, 2012

Re “The people and the props,” Editorial, Nov. 11


If the lack of appeal to intellect and reason in political ads that proliferated before the election is any indication, The Times' ideal of the “citizen voter” rarely appears in our electorate. It's tempting to ponder the use of a qualifying I.Q. test, however legally dubious, to screen out unworthy voters.

Perhaps election boards could pass constitutional muster by disqualifying any voter who spends less time reading high-quality periodicals and books than he or she does riveted to such cultural gems as “American Idol” and reality TV shows.

We'd benefit doubly from that approach. The electorate would make more enlightened decisions, and political ads wouldn't pander to vacuous, disengaged audiences.

Edward Alston
Santa Maria

“Voters … are on their own and often rely on TV ads and slate mailers.” I'm amazed that your editorial didn't connect the dots laid out in the Constitution when you indicated the information voters use to make their choices.

Why in heaven's name do you think the Founding Fathers bothered to list a free press in the 1st Amendment? It's up to the media to inform — accurately — the voting public.

This is the media's primary, constitutionally protected responsibility, not, as most would believe nowadays, to provide advertising.

Voters should not be on their own. But then again, it's today's media we are talking about, aren't we? Silly me.

Sharon Graham
Huntington Beach

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