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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.



Neville Ross
Aug. 14th, 2012 09:41 pm (UTC)
Re: Voter ID nonsense
It seems, as usual these days, that George is having a failure to communicate with certain people, you being one of them.

To address George's point about travelling; I myself won't be travelling to the USA or anyplace else until all of this security bullshit is stopped (I sure as frack won't be coming to the USA for sci-fi conventions; putting up with all of this bullcrap just so that I can travel to a place for a three-day convention isn't worth the hassle.) For a two week vacation, no problem, but for this... forget it.

As to the matter at hand; what you're saying seems to be the same old nonsense from myopic people who can't see (or are unwilling to see) that their nation's freedoms to travel and vote are being taken away; the same people who support the foolish wars the USA is fighting overseas right now in the name of 'freedom' and crying about 'socialism' taking away their rights with reference to Obama's health care bill and any environmental bill being passed, but can't see the forest for the trees of what's going on right now as far as doing simple things are concerned (George's right; who needs all of this shit just to pay for a hotel room, or anything else?)

I don't want to frame you as being like I've described above, but unfortunately with every utterance you've made here in response to George and everybody else who's spoken the facts on this issue, you are doing just that.


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

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