The low voter turnouts aren't because people don't care. It's because they believe that they don't count.
In today's video Dave Meslin addresses a Toronto Canada audience. Although his examples are drawn from Canadian political culture, they easily apply to the United States and, yes, to El Paso.
Meslin says that we live in a world that "actively discourages engagement by constantly putting bariers in our way." He names 7 barriers:
- City Hall
- Public space
- Politcal parties
- Charitable status
- Our elections
This video will only take 7 minutes of your time. Listen to it and think about El Paso: a closed, non-transparent City government, a City Manager who clamps down on "leaks", the price-tag on freedom of expression, the lack of news about how to get involved, the message that we can't act unless called upon or chosen, the lack of really bold, creative ideas, the inability of organizations such as the Franklin Mountains Wilderness Coalition or the prohibition of city employees to get involved politically - all while corporations and powers are considered people who can be involved - and the message that we just don't count.
Ask yourself this: Why do we have to ask for information via open records requests? Why aren't records just open?