Consequences of rigged maps go beyond government.
By: Carol Lenz
We all could tell stories of family or friends we have lost due to polarized politics. There is division everywhere — in government, schools, businesses, hospitals, churches and families. Our children and grandchildren are watching the disfunction we have created and are, sadly, learning from our bad behavior.
Whatever happened to ‘Wisconsin nice,’ where respect, compassion, fairness and family were values we lived? A decade of divisive politics, due to partisan gerrymandering, has changed Wisconsin for the worse, spreading its poison throughout communities and families.
Our democracy is on life support, and partisan gerrymandering and politicians played a big part in creating this mess. In a 2020 Harvard study, Wisconsin was described as a ‘democracy desert,’ because of the lack of fair political representation.
The result? People don’t vote. Qualified citizens don’t run for office. Candidates take extreme positions. Lawmaking happens behind closed doors. Public input is irrelevant. Elected representatives don’t bother to respond to constituents, hold listening sessions, complete candidate surveys or attend public forums. People are fed up.
Wisconsin deserves fair maps, where partisan voting patterns are not used as criteria for establishing voting boundaries. As more people understand the effects of partisan gerrymandering, support to end this rigged process increases, now to over 80%. People believe voters should select their representatives, not the other way around.
Tell your legislators to end partisan gerrymandering and to support fair maps. This is an important step in rebuilding unity in our government, our citizens and our families.