Keep it simple, stupid | AspenTimes.com

Keep it simple, stupid

Dear Editor:

If memory serves me correctly, the average reading ability level in the U.S. is a fifth-grade reading level which will ensure people of all reading levels are able to read and understand a message. With the upcoming November and May elections in mind, I’d like to ask the county election officials to change the procedure for writing ballots.

Instead of having an attorney write obscure legalese ballot verbiage which voters can’t understand (which I would think would invalidate the ballot), I request you have middle school teachers write the ballot verbiage, THEN and only THEN, have an attorney review the wording for accuracy and inclusiveness. I’m told I’m reasonably intelligent, but I’ll be darned if I can understand the frequently obscure legalese ballot verbiage so often used, without my seeking assistance, so imagine how difficult it is for our second-language speakers to decipher the obscure meaning.

How can we say an election was the voice of the people when the ballot is unintelligible with legalese obscurities where voters are left to interpret the meaning?

It makes imminently more sense for a school teacher to write the ballot questions ” THEN have an attorney proof read for legal verification. Please don’t obfuscate the ballot so we don’t know what we’re doing. If we go to the trouble to cast a ballot, we want our vote to count. Thank you.

Susan O’Neal

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