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The Story Behind Hornblower


 A professor of political science announced that he would be taking the class on a graduation trip to an island in the Pacific where they would get a chance to witness democracy, in its purest form, in action. 

When they arrived at the island a referendum on a very important issue to the whole island population was being debated and was scheduled for a vote.  Because of the geographical smallness of the island, and the population, full participation of the island population was possible.  Unlike in the United States where people had to vote by paper and electronic ballots from one end of the country to the other, the people of this island voted directly.  The method of voting was by blowing their horns.

The issue on the ballot was how the money to build the new school for the children of the island would be raised.  Would it be raised by taxing the rich or by taxing the poor?  The outcome looked like a slam-dunk because the poor clearly outnumbered the rich.  The students watched with rapt attention.  The moderator that was conducting the vote asked all of those in favor of taxing the poor, to build the school, to blow their horns.  Six fat men stood on a hill and blew their horns.  The students giggled and smiled.  The moderator then asked that all of those in favor of taxing the rich to blow their horns.  There was complete silence.  The moderator announced that based on the vote the poor would be taxed to pay for the school. 

The students turned to their professor and asked him why didn’t the poor, who were clearly in the majority, blow their horns?  The professor answered that; they didn’t have any horns, they couldn’t afford them. 

The point of this trip was to demonstrate to the students that in a Democracy one gets all of the democracy that one can afford.  If you don’t have a horn you will not be heard.  In America and other democracies around the world the voices of the poor and marginalized are seldom heard because they do not have horns that they can blow or that blow for them.  The rich and the powerful own and control all of the horns in America, i.e., Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, NEW YORK TIMES, WASHINGTON POST, ETC, etc.  Without Hornblowers the people are lost.  We must build our own horns and blow them loud!

- as told to Jazz Hayden by Red Pete at the Metropolitan Correctional Center

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    Response: australianwritings
    This is very interesting way of voting by this island people. Blowing horn to cast their vote is great and considering that horn has their willingness. Professor has demonstrated in great way to students how the democracy works and what big people are ruining the democracy values and how they control ...

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