I got up early so I could be at my polling place by 8 this morning. This wasn’t because I was trying to beat any rush or get ahead of the line — I understand that by moving from the big city to the suburbs that certain aspects of my voting life have changed. I just wanted to make sure I had time to vote, commute, stop for a celbratory iced coffee and still make it to work early.
All of which I accomplished. Check, check and check.
Yes, America, it’s election day! In case my recent exhortations to vote and attempt to provide voter information haven’t made a difference, here’s a few other quick thoughts. First, for anyone still uncertain about your voting location, here’s a link that will help you find your fucking polling place. (Seriously: that’s the name of the site. I love it from the bottom of my profanity-laden heart…)
For anyone wishing to opt out because voting seems “meaningless” or just a way that you’re “playing along with a corrupt system” — I don’t have time in these pre-dawn minutes* to fully respond to that line of thinking. I would like to ask this question: if voting was indeed meaningless or something that only feeds into a corrupt system, then could you tell me why rich white Republicans are so bound and determined to chip away at universal adult suffrage through voter ID laws? It would stand to reason that iof voting really didn’t matter, then there’d be no need to minimize the odds of a progressive voting block.
As for the actual voting experience (here’s those quick after-the-fact observations), I was actually surprised to realize what differences there can be, state to state and town to town. I thought I was ready for the difference between voting in a suburban setting versus all my time in the heart of Philadelphia. But it was strangely disorienting. In Philly, you checked in by name; here you check in by street address. In Philly there was a signature block; here you didn’t sign anything but you checked in both before entering the voting booth AND as you dropped off your ballot.
And that ballot? Shades of standardized tests in days of yore. Make sure you fill those bubbles in completely!
I guess I had just sort of assumed that everyone had voting machines by now. Guess times are tight. So tight that my one-horse town wasn’t even handing out “I voted!” stickers. So I made my own:
May your lines be short, may the stickers be plentiful. Now get out there and have your say int he civic process!
* This post is an odd mixture of pre-written comments with a few after-the-fact observations to be added once I’ve voted.