It’s been said before, but popular opinion is the great strength and weakness of democracy. Because as corrupt as those in power tend to be, “the people” aren’t necessarily a communal voice of wisdom.
Example 1: the internet.
Like, 50% of the content viewed on the internet is porn. And if you check youtube, the most watched videos are animals doing cute stuff and people doing stupid stuff. Meaningful content is not why we use the internet. Myself included.
Example 2: The Emancipation Proclamation. Now we’re getting serious. You think most people were happy when Lincoln freed the slaves? Most people were probably going “WTF? Who does he think he is?! This is a democracy!” That is to say, popular opinion (among those with the power to vote) did not support abolition.
Example 3: Healthcare reform. From example 2, we learned something– sometimes it doesn’t matter if a decision is popular. Sometimes it’s just gotta be done. So, healthcare reform. The bill is passed and now the real battle of implementation begins. Let’s get it done.