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Columbia Missourian

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Ignoring will of people is a flawed concept of democracy

August 31, 2011 | 7:46 p.m. CDT

I have never before been moved to write a response to a published article, especially one in the Missourian, which I admire and have great respect for.

However, the terribly misguided, naive and just plain wrong writings of J. Karl Miller beg an honest answer.

Mr. Miller's assertion that it is wrong for the legislature to respect the will of the people indicates that he has a flawed concept of our democracy, our country and the American spirit.

One of the mottoes inscribed in the marble walls of our state Capitol building states, "The Will of the People Shall Reign Supreme." That is what this country is all about.

When elected officials can completely disregard what the majority of our citizens have decided is right, through initiative petition and a subsequent election, we no longer have a government. Of the people. By the people. For the people.

Mr. Miller's statement that "the will of the people is tempered in the General Assembly by honest debate, judgment and reality" shows a naive lack of understanding of special interest groups and personal and political hidden agendas.

If Mr. Miller is against voter-passed campaign finance reform, decent wages for working people, clean energy and not abusing man's best friend, one has to wonder what his agenda is. Possibly we could understand where his thought processes come from by his quoting Larry Flynt, America's porno king.

All the "Your Vote Counts" petition asks is that it would take a three-fourths majority of the legislature to overturn initiatives that have originated with Missouri citizens and then been voted upon by the people.

The initiative petition — and elections — are the only basic rights we average citizens have to exercise input and control over our government.

Please seek out and sign this petition and exercise your rights as a citizen of our great state, and let the folks in Jefferson City understand that the will of the people shall reign supreme, as our founding fathers intended.

Fred Seaman lives in Columbia.