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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. 12th, 2012 05:08 am (UTC)
Let me preface this by saying that I consider myself a moderate who considers myself on the liberal side as far as most social issues are concerned. I'm a scientist, which is probably more important in explaining how I feel about this post.

While I greatly admire Mr. Martin's writing, I don't know that it qualifies him to be admired as a political pundit. I don't know that he isn't qualified either, but I certainly have no reason to believe so. I don't know very much about vote suppression that is purported to be going on in the states mentioned. I will have to look into it. But nowhere on this page do I see anyone providing ANY sources. I refuse to take the word of anyone who I do not know as an expert, or at least experienced, in a given field.
Robert Fiorentino
Aug. 12th, 2012 06:03 pm (UTC)
I don't think GRRM ever claimed to be a political pundit. He has an opinion, and this is his blog. We're reading his blog because we want to read what he has to say about various topics. If we don't want to hear his opinion, we can all collectively go fuck ourselves. That's our right, too.
Neil Fox
Aug. 14th, 2012 02:47 am (UTC)
if you want to be taken seriously, cut the profanity.
Aug. 13th, 2012 03:58 am (UTC)
He never said he was a political pundit.

Please check out the 'purported' voter suppression. You might be surprised.
Aug. 13th, 2012 04:15 am (UTC)
Since one does one have to be a "pundit" to write about politics?

I do hold a master's degree in journalism, for what it's worth. Those I don't remember "punditry" being among the course offerings.
Aug. 13th, 2012 06:38 am (UTC)
The main point I was trying to make was that I tend to disbelieve political (or any) opinions stated by people who don't provide any source for how they formed said opinions.
Aug. 13th, 2012 11:51 pm (UTC)
Then you'll have no trouble seeing through the fear-mongering about voter fraud, since prosecutions are, in fact, vanishingly rare on the ground.


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

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