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I take strong issue with your editorial excoriating Ken Milder in Sunday’s Monitor. At the fateful skate park hearing Ken was the councilor who chose to discuss seriously the role of elected officials in a representative democracy. It is an issue that arises anew every few years when particularly controversial questions come before the council. Ken addressed it thoroughly and demonstrated understanding of the problem. Your editorial did not.
The American systems of governments, from federal to state to local, all are some form of representative democracy: we elect citizens to make decisions for the jurisdiction as a whole. Most systems provide some way to bypass the representatives on some subjects. Across the country a spectrum of direct citizen participation in government decisions can be perceived, ranging from none at the federal level, to referendum and initiative in many states and localities, to almost direct democracy in a few New England towns (even the latter elect folk to handle matters in between annual town meetings).
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