I was shocked and more than a little frightened to read in The Maui News (Nov. 7) about Gov. Neil Abercrombie's proposal to have all future voting done by mail. Aren't people today isolated enough from personal, in-depth contact with one another - often ironically by electronic means of so-called "communication"?
For many years, I have tremendously enjoyed being a poll worker on Election Day. It's such a thrill to assist fellow citizens as they come through, check in and openly participate in the support of our democracy while enjoying the privacy of the voting booth - something not available in all parts of the world.
At a Thanksgiving Day party, I surprised a young lady by informing her that in some countries guards are posted at the polling station, not to protect the voters but to check the ballots and be sure that "You did vote for our peerless leader, didn't you?" After the ballots of the few who bother to show up have been counted ("Why bother? My vote means nothing anyway"), peerless leader can crow: "See? The people voted me in again."
A primary way to nourish our democracy is by personal interaction, even if we do disagree about issues.
Gov. Abercrombie: Is your proposal some kind of "divide and conquer" strategy?
David D. Slocum