I think mandating political participation is a mistake in a society where "low information voters" are the majority. only my opinion, and I'm not sure if the population turned its back on actual news media, or if the news media turned its back on the population, but its basically impossible to find unbiased news or information.
Most of the "news" falls into "Info-tainment" and/or pandering to one viewpoint or another. What is sold as news is really designed to keep the viewers coming back so the "news" can sell more advertising. As a result, they sell hard to the left or right, and avoid any opinion contrary to their viewers. Meanwhile, the same audience is spoon-fed more of their own opinion by their "newsfeeds" online. These are contently adjusted and customized to what that individual "liked" or read last.
The information gets more and more narrowly focused on what the individual already agrees with so there is no longer a chance to learn or debate. The only logical evolution in this is that the opinion gets more radicalized in their chosen direction, thus we have a nation of extreme liberalism and extreme conservatism. This might not seem like a problem until you see the US government is basically run on compromise and/or deals, but when your constituents will no longer compromise on anything, its impossible to do anything that will actually serve the public.
This is why we have an essentially unbreakable two party system, and why we will continue to see more "shutdowns" and political stand-offs. This is also why you hear people say things like, "my vote doesn't matter because they are all criminals" or some variation of something they probably saw on TV or Facebook.
Schools no longer teach kids how to learn, only to sit quietly, memorize, regurgitate and obey. Again, this really comes down to "funding" or money. All of the above, again my opinion, would be a great way to control a society to steer it in any direction you wanted...blah, blah, I'll put my tinfoil hat back on be quiet again.