By questioning the presumed virtues of independent voters as a group, I was not suggesting that individual voters have paramount civic obligations to identify with either major party. Independents share Democratic perspectives on some issues and Republican perspectives on others (according to Pew,) so I'm not denigrating them for eschewing party membership. There are also logistic reasons not to enroll in a party: I'm officially un-enrolled partly in the hope of cutting down on junk mail and partly in response to the Massachusetts primary system.
You can take pride in this skepticism, considering it a sign of sophistication (and when skepticism means a disinclination to believe what you want to believe, regardless of evidence, I applaud it). But you might also ask yourself why, if skepticism is on the increase, so is misinformation: facts have rarely seemed to matter less. You might regard skepticism about representative democracy with some wariness: As I suggested earlier, it can devolve into cynicism, crude situational ethics, and a tolerance for self-interested lies, none of which signals sophistication so much as surrender.
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