Letter: Philosophical differences in governing

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Editor of the Reformer,

Plato, in "The Republic," wrote that democracy is doomed to fail due to the unhappy fact that people lack the intelligence and character to govern themselves. This was brought home to him when the citizens of democratic Athens put Socrates, his wise and beloved teacher, to death.

Those who voted for Donald Trump and continue to support him are the ones Plato warned about 2,500 years ago. You have given us a president who has demonstrated his incompetence in both substance and style for the last three years. Many of you care so little for the common good that instead of making the effort to use reason to engage in politics you resort to rank emotion. Reason is reserved only for the calculation of private gain.

This would be a better world were we to use sound argument to choose our leaders. This would mean using logic, science, and a sound understanding of language to question the assumptions we hold dear. The alternative to this can only result in needless suffering. The current pandemic is but one example of what happens when we fail to think things through.

Were he alive today, Plato would almost certainly urge us to develop the character needed to self govern. Short of that he might well encourage many of us to stay home on election day.

Tom Reish

Westmoreland, N.H., June 8

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