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"Show Us Your Papers"

I am way too busy these days for long political rants.

But I would be remiss if I do not at least make passing mention of how depressed, disgusted, and, yes, angry I've become as I watch the ongoing attempts at voter suppression in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida, Iowa, and other states where Republicans and their Teabagger allies control key seats of power.

It is one thing to attempt to win elections. But trying to do so by denying the most basic and important right of any American citizen to hundreds and thousands of people, on entirely spurious grounds... that goes beyond reprehensible. That is despicable.

It would really be nice if there were still some Republicans of conscience out there who would stand up and loudly denounce these efforts, a few men of honor and integrity for whom "win the election" does not "win the election at any cost." There were once many Republicans I admired, even I disagreed with them: men like Everett Dirksen, Clifford Case, Henry Cabot Lodge, William Scranton... yes, even Barry Goldwater, conservative as he is. I do not believe for a moment that Goldwater would have approved of this, any more than Robert A. Heinlein would have. They were conservatives, but they were not bigots, nor racists, nor corrupt. The Vote Suppressors have far more in common with Lester Maddox, George Wallace, John Stennis, and their ilk than they do with their distinguished GOP forebears.

The people behind these efforts at disenfranchising large groups of voters (the young, the old, the black, the brown) are not Republicans, since clearly they have scant regard for our republic or its values. They are oligarchs and racists clad in the skins of dead elephants.

And don't tell me they are libertarians either. No true libertarians would ever support a culture where citizens must "show their papers" to vote or travel. That's a hallmark of a police state, not a free country.

TUESDAY ADDENDUM: Okay, this has been running several days now, has been featured on HUFFINGTON POST and ABC news, referenced on Stephanie Miller, and no doubt countless other people. We have had four hundred messages, and I think everyone has had their say, and everything that needs to be said has been said. Generally eight or ten times. There are plenty of links and references in the comment threads for those who would like to know more about these voter suppression efforts. If you don't want to dig through the links, start with the Brennan Center for Justice and get the facts.

There's no sense in letting this spin on in circles forever. I am locking comments. Back to Westeros and worldcon and similar subjects, boys and girls.

Thanks for listening.



Aug. 13th, 2012 06:47 pm (UTC)
After this, I'm done. I promise. Ha!
No one is asking if voter fraud is possible. It most certainly is.
No one is denying that it has happened before. The only disagreement is if it's a major problem or not.
If it is possible, every American should get behind finding a way to make it harder to steal votes. That is just common sense. Every stolen vote denies the rights of another citizen. That should tick us off.
Neither side should have the opportunity to steal votes. Everyone benefits by eliminating the possibility.
If showing an ID is perceived as suppression, what can be done? Should we ignore the possibility? Both sides have claimed the other is guilty of voter fraud before. The topic will certainly come up again.
I wear steal toe boots while working. Chances are very slim that something will smash my toes but it is possible.
So, how can we fix it? Perhaps Libs should come up with a better way. Regardless of party, I will stand behind any good idea. As both constantly dream up horrible ideas. This should be a bipartisan effort to protect everyone not an election year attempt to slander the other side. As with everything, this had become one more tool to further polarize the country. Citizens at war with each other make for a weak country.
So who's creating this polarization? Who stands to benefit from our division?
I could easy demonize liberals but that would make it look as if I'm a con. I could do the same to cons but I refuse to be lumped in to either party. I know gun owning liberals and I know openly gay conservatives. Point being that the majority of America cannot be labeled all of nothing. We need to remember that this is our country. We have the power.


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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