The 16 percent turnout of registered voters in the Republican primary for the Lexington County sheriff election is symptomatic of the modern era’s rampant apathy inherent on our citizenry. It’s not unique to Lexington County but is particularly disappointing in a demographic that is stable, growing and prosperous.
The newly elected sheriff replaced a legendary 42-year veteran who dedicated his life to securing the safety of the county, made significant innovations garnering national attention, but tarnished those accomplishments in recent times.
We don’t like to think of sheriffs as politicians, given their scope of responsibilities and risks. But they are beholden to the public. The poor turnout represents the overall disgust and lack of confidence in the political process. And that attitude exists in most of the state and national elections, all the way to Washington. True leaders and pure integrity are in short supply. The 16 percent who showed up can only hope that those rare qualities are inherent in the new sheriff.