It seems that technological development has made its mark on all sectors of daily life. Why not the democratic process?
The arguments seem reasonable.
The city of Honolulu, Hawaii implemented an “all digital” election in recent local elections, i.e. the ballots were cast either on the Internet, or by phone. This experiment hasn’t made a statement either way for other levels of government. But what would it mean, if millions of people voted from the comfort of their own home — how much hassle and money, in terms of state and federal spending, could be saved if we employed a “digital democracy?”
There are more than 500 million units of fixed-line and mobile telephones in a country of about 305 million. And some 223 million Americans enjoy internet access, the majority of which is broadband.
Hattip to our commenter Phillip. When Raymond Burke was Archbishop of Saint Louis he was a tireless advocate of the unborn and also tireless in taking to task those who supported abortion. His elevation to be head of the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature in Rome has not diminshed his zeal for the pro-life cause. In an interview in October of last year he stated that the Democrat party risked transforming itself into the party of death.
There have been a number of denunciations directed at Catholics who endorsed Obama in the Catholic blogosphere lately. Not being a particular fan of President-elect Obama, I empathize with those who are doing the denouncing. However, in many cases I think this has gone too far.
Mystery writer, apologist, and Dante scholar Dorothy Sayers once said of her fictional creation Lord Peter Wimsey something along the lines of, “Peter is not really Christian. He would have considered it impolite to hold such strong beliefs.” (If someone knows of the exact quotation — I believe it was from one of Sayers’ published letters — I’d be terribly grateful.)
It is, I think, one of the great temptations of people with an intellectual bent to feel apologetic over holding opinions which are too strong. And it is, I fear, because of a cowardice somewhat akin to this that I have felt slightly embarrassed each day as I check the American Catholic webpage and see that in the tag cloud in the right hand column the term “Abortion” is growing larger and larger. I have been no small contributor to this myself. I hesitate to go count, but I think over half my own posts have listed “abortion” as a topic.
Amy Welborn had a post the other day making a very important point, summing up much of what I’ve been thinking but not successfully putting into words for much of the interminable lead-up to this election. Amy asks:
[I]s Catholic politico-talk, particularly in the present moment, as most of us are engaging in it, taking place essentially on the level of vague assertions, associations and concepts? And – are we avoiding and ignoring the way that government and political processes actually work?
She singles out two particular areas in which Catholic bloggers have often imbued politics with too much weight, and thus divorced it from what it is.