What if when you stepped into the election booth to cast your vote this election season you had to justify your vote? Instead of just puling that lever in favor of your chosen candidate you had to write a little essay on why you voted for them.

Your little justification would then be subject to review by a machine (to avoid partisan opinions) to make sure you knew exactly what you were doing. If your essay was crap it would be rejected and your vote would be nullified.

I know this sounds crazy and i'm sure it will never happen but it interesting to think about. The sad truth is that a lot of people step into the booth and vote for a certain candidate because they like how they look or because they're name sounds cool. This means that all these bullshit votes could sway the elections in favor of a candidate that they really don't want elected.

This little justification things would force people who wanted to vote to actually think ahead of time about what they were doing. Some might say that this is unfair but who can't right a few sentences saying why they like that candidate? If someone can't do this simple task maybe they shouldn't be voting in the first place.

Some might say this wouldn't be democracy which really I can't argue with but it's not like only smart people can do this. It only takes a little bit of time and effort to learn about the candidates and make an educated decision. Anybody who can read can probably handle this task. People who can't handle this shouldn't be voting and probably won't even bother to vote.

In the end not only will the elections be real reflections of what the people really want but also it will force the general public to become more educated which is always a good thing.
I thought I should mention I'm liberal. I can't even vote yet so what ever I think isn't even really important yet. Never the less I thought I should put his idea out in the open and see what people think. Honestly, I don't think it will even have a large impact on the outcome just because most of the people who decide to vote or pretty intelligent and think about who they are going to vote for.

The inherent problem with your idea is the fact that somebody has to program the machine to weight certain responses as being correct or incorrect. While we attempt to use computers to be non-biased, we still run into the situation that standardized tests run into.

No matter how carefully graded, or how carefully constructed, human nature will always bias tests on their own personal experiences. For the SAT/ACTs, this means that the people who will do best are of the same social status of the framers of the tests.

For the electoral computer, even more problems would come up. Do we discount someones vote because they can't use proper articles, which demonstrates low intelligence? Should we judge their intelligence? Is it acceptable to simply vote along party lines (like most of Europe)?

There are just too many "what if"'s and biases to ever put a condition on voting. If we wanted to have Communist elections then we'd just put a gun to everybody's head.

Even those who vote solely on the name of the candidate have the right to vote. Intelligence, eloquence, writing ability, etc., should have no bearing on one's right.

Some people hold, in their heads, a general understanding of the world that serves as a shorthand way to evaluate new information. So, someone could hold the idea "Republicans good, Democrats bad." And that is all the information they might need to cast a vote.

Others might hold other similar shortcut ideas " young good, old bad" or " intelligent good, not-intelligent bad." Whatver ones "justification" for voting is only important to the actual individual. Justfying one's vote to others is irrelevant, largely undoable, and frankly, none of your damn business. For example, if you vote Republican, you could NEVER justify your vote, as far as I'm concerned, so why would we ever even try to envision a need to justify a vote?

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