Sunday, November 6, 2016

Principles Should Trump Partisanship

Why Voter Equality?

It’s not the results of polls or referenda which provide the core rationale for upholding the principle of voter equality. The reason we should “make every vote count” and thereby uphold the equal rights of those who vote for smaller parties is not because this principle could win polls or referenda, or that it could win unanimous approval/ consensus in the Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reform. Those are not core reasons for upholding the principle of voter equality.

Instead, this principle should be upheld simply because it is the right thing to do. “Rightness” is defined by the golden rule, not by the “majority rule.”

“Majority Rule” can sometimes be poisoned with partisanship, such as would be the case in a referendum on proportional representation. Such a referendum would be a partisan measure of how much people want to protect their parties’ present turf in the status quo -- rather than a non-partisan measure of how much people want to change the status quo so that it protects the equal fair rights of those who vote for smaller parties. If the majority don’t want a redistribution and relinquishment of some of their power in a change that would give all voters their fair share, then that resistance from the majority doesn’t make the majority fair or right. 

Other examples of when the majority has not been fair or right are found in history: Look at slavery, the women’s right to vote, etc.

“The Golden Rule,” as opposed to the Majority Rule, is principle which states “treat others the way you want to be treated.” It is the higher principle because it isn’t susceptible to the fallacy of “appeal to popularity” (argumentum ad populum). That explains why the concept of human rights is based on the Golden Rule, not on Majority Rule.

Voter equality is a human right. The government needs no further argument to keep their promise to “make every vote count” –just as it needed no further argument to take a stand upholding minority rights among ethnic groups.