The Press - - Opinion -

Si­mon Chap­ple (Nov 8) is cor­rect, ed­u­ca­tion leads to ac­tive democ­racy. How­ever study­ing civics alone isn’t enough, it cre­ates bore­dom. Study­ing his­tory’s great dic­ta­tors in gory de­tail will ham­mer the mes­sage home. Hitler, Stalin, Ghengis Khan, Nero, Tamer­lane, and to­day’s po­lit­i­cal bul­lies have at­ti­tudes in com­mon.

They re­place in­de­pen­dent ju­di­cia­ries with kan­ga­roo courts, stop free­dom of speech, free­dom of travel, free­dom of law-abid­ing re­li­gion, free­dom of as­so­ci­a­tion, and the cit­i­zens’ right to bear arms against dic­ta­tors like them­selves. Study­ing these psy­chopaths will fas­ci­nate the peo­ple who most need to hear the democ­racy mes­sage.

If ed­u­ca­tion fails to de­liver, mak­ing vot­ing com­pul­sory like Aus­tralia sends the same mes­sage: vote in­tel­li­gently, or lose all right to self-gov­ern.

Philip Rex Robin­son, Waltham

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