Three Rs and a V: Schools should teach the importance of voting

Glazer, Nathan. "Three Rs and a V: Schools should teach the importance of voting." Education Next 7 (2007).

Excerpt: Why We Vote is a provocative interpretation of the factors that determine participation in our democratic processes, and specifically voting, the form of participation available to almost all. Campbell begins with the story of Traci Hodgson, the only person of 275 registered in her precinct who voted in Boston’s 1989 City Council elections. She was 21, had lived in Boston for only two months, and was not very familiar with the candidates. So why did she vote? “I just think it’s important to vote. If you have the right, you ought to exercise it—whether you are going to make a difference or not.”

Campbell has structured his book to explain the case of Traci Hodgson. It is a theoretically sophisticated and statistically demanding examination of who votes and why. The United States stands at the bottom among democratic countries in the percentage of the population voting. Theories and analyses abound as to why this is so.

New Republic