Editorial: Graduates, make sure you read this

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 14, 2006

It is easily to forget what a privilege an education is. There are billions of people in this world who never receive an education and know nothing of history, physics, art or literature. Notice that democracies fail where knowledge is lacking and often suppressed. It is having an educated populace that makes a democratic nation successful.

Graduates of high school and college, you owe it to the people who paid for your education &045; your parents, grandparents and complete strangers who pay their taxes so you can go to school &045;&160;to go out into this world of ours and be productive. That means working hard at your job and making money. It also means contributing to the community in which you live by giving of your time and resources for philanthropic necessities, too. It also means doing your civic duty and serving on juries and committees and voting.

We have given to you. Now it is time for you to give back.

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Let’s explain more about voting.

Why does an educated populace contribute to a healthy democracy?

Because before the people vote, they do their research. An educated public elects better leaders. They’ve learned from school how civics works. They’ve learned from experience how politics work (all politics are local), and they’ve learned from reading the newspapers, getting added insight from multiple media sources and talking with others which candidates they prefer.

In other words, you owe it to society to make informed votes. Don’t be a voter who never pays attention and votes flippantly. Don’t be a voter who blindly votes a single party. Don’t be a bandwagon voter. Don’t be a voter who buys the campaign hype. Be a discerning voter who makes the right choice based on the individual candidates.

Because that, graduates, is why our nation’s forefathers wanted you to be educated.