In our politically-divided society, we often clash with our neighbor over ideas on how others ought to act. We believe we have some legitimate say concerning the lives of those around us. Health care, war, education, welfare, taxes, and the list goes on. But these are more than just musings on how things ought to be; they’re directives we seek to enact in the world. Through the political process, we intend to impose our ideas on those who disagree; to force compliance. This belief that our impositions are justified stems from our conception of the "the will of the people."

It is through the vote that the people believe themselves to be acting within their right when they seek to bend others to their will. But does voting truly save you from the moral culpability of forcing others to submit to your worldview? Because the will of the people isn’t truly the will of all people. If it were, there’d be no need to vote. But is it even the will of most people? Let’s examine the last election.

In a country with a population of 323 million, 80 million cannot vote due to age and legal restrictions. Only 55% of those who can vote, did vote. And of those 55%, 62 million voted for Donald Trump. This means 19% of the population decided who would rule over the remaining 81%. And if that’s not enough to dispel the myth of “majority rule,” Hillary Clinton actually received nearly 3 million more votes than Trump. This isn’t an anomaly either. Researchers from Princeton University discovered in a 2014 study that average citizens have little or no independent influence” on U.S. government policy, while economic elites and groups representing business interests have “substantial independent impacts.”

The evidence makes it clear that your vote has little impact on policy, but more importantly, what this should reveal to you is the madness by which our society operates. While we bicker among ourselves and form bureaucratic mobs via political parties, those who actually control the state are imposing their views on you, and you justify it partly out of ignorance, and partly out of this fallacious ideal of the will of the people.

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