Trust: Reaching the 100 Million Missing Voters and Other Selected Essays
by Farai Chideya
Publication Date: Aug 25, 2004
List Price: $13.95 (store prices may vary)
Page Count: 224
Imprint: Soft Skull Press
Publisher: Soft Skull Press
Parent Company: Soft Skull Press
Where are the 100 million people who failed to vote in 2000 and are unlikely to vote in 2004? Political analyst Farai Chideya looks beyond day-to-day political struggles to the heart of a nation at war with itself. The 2000 election highlighted the rift between liberal/conservative and "Red State"/ "Blue State." But that superficial crack in our society actually is evidence of much more serious, indeed foundational, damage in our society. The United States, Chideya argues, lacks the moral, legal, and psychological framework for debating complex issues in a pluralistic society. Instead we rely on an outdated idea of dichotomy, that each issue has two opposing sides instead of many interested parties. And in so doing, we have lost, in effect disenfranchised, half the country.
Chideya’s title essay compliments many other ones written in the course of covering campaigns and controversies. She skips the easy answer, showing how black/white thinking (a key element of the Bush Adminstration) restricts our moral and political responses. A real democracy will allow us to acknowledge the complexity of our own lives, as well as our political interests. As we do that, we will be able to craft a working vision of government and civic life.