To the editor:
For more than two centuries, gerrymandering has been maneuvered by politicians in both parties for partisan advantage, enduring under the purview of American jurisprudence. However, the technological advancements of our time have made gerrymandering more brazen and surgically algorithmic to the extent that it is devitalizing our democracy.
Indiana serves as an epitome of the electoral apathy that gerrymandering is a principal culprit of: our abysmal 28 percent voter turnout rate in the 2014 midterms was a national low.
High-tech redistricting has wrought a modern-day version of political patronage in state legislatures nationwide. Influenced by the whims of party insiders, such patronage has encouraged rancorous polarization, the distortion of constituencies, and the marginalization of underserved communities in order to reward doctrinaire partisans with uncompetitive districts.
A “legislator for life” is a distinction that seems more befitting for the political system of Azerbaijanis, not Americans. Notwithstanding the pending Supreme Court decision in the Gill v. Whitford case, which hopefully undermines corrupt partisan gerrymandering for good, the Republican supermajority in the Indiana General Assembly should pass a bill this legislative session mandating that a nonpartisan, citizen-led commission draw district lines instead of politicians inclined to pick their own voters.
The conservative ideal of competition shouldn’t just apply to business and health care, but to politics as well.