Thursday, October 30, 2008

Early Voting/AdvanceVoting

I never considered this option until this year. But several things came into play for me in my decision to wait until Tuesday.

1. The last time I cast a vote in a Presidential election was 2004. I told Miss Jessie I would drive her up to the library and we got there at 6:45 at which time there was already a line around the building. Because she was 92 at the time everyone in line passed her up to the front and since I was her driver we were voting by 7:10 am and out of there. I do not anticipate this kind of kindness. In fact in 2004 I did not anticipate it but it was a nice thing and if you don't want to stand in line for hours I strongly suggest you drive an extremely old person to your polling place.

2. There was a problem with the earlyvoting in another county. The little ovals you were supposed to fill in for your candidate were too small and the lines around them were too thick for the electronic reader to read them and so 19,000 absentee ballots had to be recreated by hand by government workers. I want my fucking ballot to be fucking read the way I fill it out.

3. Every night on the evening news it has been reported that the lines for the early/advance Voting locations are experiencing lines from 2 - 6 hours in length. If I am going to wait I will wait on election day.

3. There is just something about election day. There is an excitement and if part of that day means I have to stand in line for 5 or 6 or 9 hours so be it. I want to cast my vote and come home and turn on the TV and rejoice in the fact that this country has finally seen the light. I will wake up extremely early, I will drive up with only the minimum of face washing and tooth-brushing, and I will stand in line as long as it takes.

My worry for Tuesday - that many people will decide not to stand in line. PLEASE DO NOT BE ONE OF THESE PEOPLE. Most employers allow 2 - 3 hours on Election Day for employees to vote. You can go early before work and wake up just a couple of hours early to be there when the polls open of you can go late and get there after work and be in line in which case your vote MUST be cast. Neither will be pleasant but I suppose it was not pleasant for the women who fought for the right to vote and were jailed back at the turn of the last century. I suppose it was not pleasant for the African-Americans who fought for the right to be heard in the middle of the last century. Once every 4 years we can certainly give up far less to be heard.

Fewer than 550 votes determined the outcome of the last election. In 2008 do you actually want to be one of the people who could not be bothered?

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