Times change and governments need to adjust to those changes. Article V of the Constitution was added for the purpose of keeping up with the times and making corrections. 17 Amendments have been passed over the last 230 years. But it has been nearly a half century since we introduced and ratified a new Constitutional Amendment.
Polarization has divided the country. The super majorities needed to pass a new amendment would mean that the two parties would have to agree.
We lack a consistent source of information that all can agree upon. We have two information sources. We listen to one or listen to the other. News and social media are married to one source or the other. The information supplied by these two sources is typically shows little agreement. All facts are subject to challenge. The scenario is similar to two opposing attorneys in a court room. Anyone that has sat through a courtroom trial knows that trials can get ugly. Our hyper polarization is ugly. Even when one side is 100% right and the other side is100% wrong, the people are choosing to listen to the argument of their attorney. Truth and facts are often irrelevant. Every aspect of our existence has become political.
The right complains about the administrative state and declining morality. The left complains about racism and income inequality. Both are locked into their perpetual cycle of circular information that supports their cause. With widespread expansion of news media and social media, we have ended up with two sets of mutual admiration societies.
A half century ago we had David Brinkley and Walter Cronkite were competing to give us the news. It appeared once a day on TV on the evening news. Claims of fake news and alternative facts were non-existent. Social media did not exist. The average margin of victory for individual states in the 1960 presidential election was 6%.
In the 2012 and 2016 presidential elections the margin was 16% and 17% respectively. Polarization has become so strong that Congress is ineffective. It does nothing more than put out fires and conduct day-to day housekeeping. At times Congress is more engaged in playing power-grabbing political games that conducting the business of the day. Major issues are often pushed to POTUS & SCOTUS. That’s not the way our Constitution was designed.
Common ground does exist. Fighting a perpetual ideological war is not natural to human nature. Both sides can agree on some negative aspects of the administrative state or agree on some morality issues. Both sides can agree on a reasonable approach to racism and income inequality. It does not have to be a perpetual ideological war. We all have opinions. This is a democracy/republic. The people should be driving the bus, not the polarized Congress and the polarized media. Opinions of the people should dominate. We need to bypass Congress and the media and let the people make important decisions.
A clear path exists that will allow us to bypass the polarized Congress and media. Expecting Congress to do this sets the bar too high. However, Article V allows us to bypass Congress. We do not need to push issues to POTUS & SCOTUS. If an issue is important, then let the people decide the issue. Let them vote on it. The R-60 modified national referendum proposal will allow voters to decide important issues that Congress chooses not to legislate. It is detailed at articlev.blog.