Dear Editor:

I read the article, Canal Flats race likely to come down to pulling a name from a hat, by Steve Hubrecht, in your October 20 edition with interest. 

The idea of deciding an election by drawing names seems like an unusual way to decide a tight election. However, the BC provincial law which allows towns and cities in the province to draw lots in the event of a tied election result is actually based on about 2,500 years of democratic history and tradition. 

The ancient Greeks — the founders of Western civilization and democratic tradition — actually preferred drawing names to having elections! This process — called sortition — was the way the early Greeks decided who would hold power. This random system was thought to help ensure that power was held by people who best represented the public and protected from the influences of existing power, wealth, and popularity. It was seen as foundational to democracy at the time. 

Drawing lots isn’t a democratic glitch — it’s a foundational piece with ancient traditions.

Adrian Bergles,

Radium Hot Springs