Given all the brouhaha that exists over redistricting, I thought I would give one simple idea that would free our nation and states from tyranny. 😉 Turn the job over to a computer. Yes, take the blood and politics out of it, and let computers make fair districts.
How do we do that? Simple. You need a computerized map of the political entity being divided, and the locations of the voters. You give the computer a simple instruction: minimize the length of the internal boundary lines within the political entity, subject to the districts being roughly the same population.
No one can argue that such a method is not fair. It produces compact, convex districts that look fair, and no one needs to say a word — just accept the output of the computer.
What would be the benefit? Districts would be a lot less polar, and seats would not be as safe for incumbents. And when the new census comes out — boom! Many politicians would find themselves fighting for their lives in new districts that don’t fit them.
This could herald the return of the citizen-lawmaker, because it would be difficult to maintain a seat for a long time. Perhaps with some help, such as permanently disallowing politicians from being lobbyists, it could make a genuine change in the way our government works.
PS — In my life, I have been approached by others to use my math skills to gerrymander a large state in the US. I refused (at age 29), though I knew how it could be done.