A setback for good government


Published August 11, 2023

WORLD Opinions

Democracy used to have a bad reputation. Classical philosophers despised it, the American Founders feared it. But their wisdom has been rejected by the people of Ohio, who have voted down a ballot initiative that would have made it more difficult to amend the state constitution. The proposed change would have raised the threshold from a bare majority (50 percent plus one) vote by the public to a 60 percent margin. But with the effort’s defeat, it will remain easy to get constitutional amendments on the ballot, and they will still need only a bare majority to become the state’s supreme law.

The immediate result of the results from Tuesday is that Ohio voters can more easily pass an amendment on the ballot this fall that allows abortion until birth, eliminates parental consent laws, and permits the chemical and surgical mutilation of gender-confused children. Of course, the amendment’s supporters know that Ohio voters do not want their state to compete with Illinois to be the late-term abortion and child sex-change surgery capital of the Midwest, and so they are not advertising this radicalism.

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Nathanael Blake, Ph.D. is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center. His primary research interests are American political theory, Christian political thought, and the intersection of natural law and philosophical hermeneutics. His published scholarship has included work on Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Alasdair MacIntyre, Russell Kirk and J.R.R. Tolkien. He is currently working on a study of Kierkegaard and labor. As a cultural observer and commentator, he is also fascinated at how our secularizing culture develops substitutes for the loss of religious symbols, meaning and order.

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