Simple question. Are you?
Why can't there be a basic educational requirement before Americans are permitted to vote? We do have the means to administer such a test fairly (see below), and I suspect most of those who'd object would do so out of misguided liberal concerns of discrimination... or because they sense they themselves would fail.
Sorry, but I'm so sick of fear and ignorance at the voting booth.
My first step would be to assemble a diverse group of people to develop the test. I'd include well-educated members of virtually every American societal, economic, racial, and cultural demographic, as well as people who speak fluently in the language of all our significant population groups- those that represent at least 10% of the country.
Although I'm wide open to input here, for now the only things I can think of they'd all have in common are a college education which included ample American and world history, sociology, psychology, ethics, and a desire to raise our voters' level of critical and objective thinking.
Then- and this obliterates the "discrimination" theory- we give every citizen all the questions and answers in advance- with plenty of time to study!
Come the day of the elections, you didn’t study and prepare, you don't vote. Period. Why? You're making a decision that effects many people's lives- you should know what you're doing.
Some will point out, accurately, that there are people who don't have the cognitive skill to study effectively or navigate such a test due to this or that mental handicap.
About that: apart from the fact that such individuals would probably have a difficult time making a truly informed choice at the voting booth under any circumstances, handicaps come in all shapes and sizes.
In my opinion, there are far more debilitating intellectual handicaps than impaired cognitive skills.
For example, we currently have large numbers of voters who are severely handicapped by their fear, ignorance, and poor critical thinking. Typically, this means a lack of education and the brainwashed perception that Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, and Rush Limbaugh are the Three Wise Men. Such people are usually easy to frighten and manipulate, highly susceptible to acting on their fears, and would typically find posts such as this elitist and condescending rather than sadly accurate.
Worst of all, they vote.
So. Let's address the above handicap first, before we focus on voting challenges among far smaller population groups with horrible conditions such as advanced dementia, significant retardation, and other forms of severe cognitive impairment, as tragic as those conditions are.
Until next time, take good care of yourself.