"I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man."

Thomas Jefferson
Sept. 23, 1800

Sunday, April 15, 2012

E is for......Election Day

We set the signs up really early :-)
I really love election day. I have been taking off the day of the general election for the last few years to stand outside my local polling place and hand out literature, greet voters and generally bask in the vibes of a representative republic in action. I know that's geeky in the extreme, but there you are, it's true. I've even gotten my son into the act. Our schools are used as polling places, so election day is usually a "teacher work day" and John is home. The last few years he has accompanied me to the polls. He gets up early to help me put up signs, and then happily hands out information and or just sits and watches the goings on. I think he was hooked when the first year he did this, he got a fresh, home-made ham biscuit from Bill Rabon's wife. Bill, a local veterinarian, is our state senator now, but was running for the seat then and his wife was running from poll to poll feeding the troops. John is a sucker for a biscuit, and I also think (hope) he sort of caught on to the way I was feeling and took to the day with enthusiasm. I'm proud to think that John, at 12, understands what election day means.
Waiting for the voter

Lately, the move nationally and at our state level has been to expand election day over as much time as possible. Early voting begins weeks before election day and absentee ballots are available to anyone, not just those who plan to be absent on election day. The goal of this is two-fold, first, to make it easier on the poll workers and elections officials on election day, and second, to make it as easy as possible for as many people as possible to vote. I understand the first reason, but really disagree with the second. Call me an elitist or what have you, but I don't think more participation necessarily makes for a better or more valid election. The polls are open all day on election day, from before sunrise to after dark. You can come before work or after or on a lunch break. If you know you want to vote and will not be able to make it to the polls, you should get an absentee ballot. If it's too inconvenient for you, or if you see a line and are turned off, I really don't want you choosing our representatives. You just aren't taking it seriously enough, and we will be better off without your participation. I despise our "Motor Voter" law for the same reason. I really think we are better off if the only people who vote are those who care enough to go register to do so.

Besides, with all those people casting votes early, who is going to feed John and I biscuits?

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