Thinking critically as a voter

The difficulty of the voter lies in assessing what a candidate has said and what a candidate has done and will do.

The difficulty of the voter lies in assessing what a candidate has said and what a candidate has done and will do.

Sitting at my desk are my notes from political theory 202 from when I attended the University of Victoria in 2016. One of my most memorable lessons was the difference between the dialectic process and doxa.

Doxa are opinions people have based one what they have been told, in other words, facile statement or easy arguments. The dialectic process is a method that uses logic through three stages to conclude what is true.

The first stage is the thesis, a claim about something. The antithesis is a claim that makes sense but is opposite of the thesis.Through dialogue the contradiction is resolved becoming the synthesis, which in effect becomes the new thesis.

As voters it is important that we use critical thinking to determine who would be the best representative for our area as theMember of Legislative Assembly for the Nechako Lakes.

I encourage all voters to read the articles in this issue about the all candidates meeting with an astute mind. Use your analytical thought process to discern what each party platform stands for, and especially take note of the methods in which they describe as to how they propose to abide and enforce those principles.

Above all, do not get caught up in demagogue banter. A demagogue by definition is a politician who gains power and popularity by arousing the emotions, passions, and prejudices of the people.

The problem with the past presidential election in the United States is that it played on these human antics. This practice isnot politics. It plays on the belief that pathos, also known as the quality of expression, is more important than logic and ethics.

There is a place for passionate expression. We all would like to like the personality of the person we are voting for. But it is not about how a candidate says it, it is about how a candidate proposes to enforce what they promote.

A credible argument is one that equally balanced by the trifecta that is pathos, logos, and ethos.

So as you read the responses of candidates, judge their validity not only by if what they stand for matches with your opinions,but ask yourself if how they argue is charged with logical reasoning, ethical response, or expressive antics.

 

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