You might object that people were asked ‘What do you think?’ rather than ‘What do you feel?’, but this is a common misperception.
Referendums and elections are always about human feelings, not about human rationality.
If democracy were a matter of rational decision-making, there would be absolutely no reason to give all people equal voting rights – or perhaps any voting rights.
There is ample evidence that some people are far more knowledgeable and rational than others, certainly when it comes to specific economic and political questions.
In the wake of the Brexit vote, eminent biologist Richard Dawkins protested that the vast majority of the British public – including himself – should never have been asked to vote in the referendum, because they lacked the necessary background in economics and political science.
‘You might as well call a nationwide plebiscite to decide whether Einstein got his algebra right, or let passengers vote on which runway the pilot should land.”
Yuval Noah Harari, 21 Lessons for the 21st Century