I read both papers this morning. When I was done, all sorts of journal entries ran through my mind. Unfortunately, I feel that all of them would only throw gasoline on the fire. All I’m going to say is that I am desperately sad and depressed this morning. I’m looking at both sides with disgust. We have soldiers dying overseas to bring democracy to people who’ve never had it. How are we going to bring it home?
I’ve been listening to JPR’s discussion on voting procedures and methods. I like Oregon’s vote by mail. There is no way for anyone to tell from the envelope that the person filling out the ballot is white, black, brown, polka-dot, or a one eyed, one horned, flying, purple people eater. We don’t have to worry about standing in line before or after work. We don’t have to worry about showing up at the right precinct. We don’t have to worry about tardy election workers. Ballots are delivered about 2 ½ weeks before the election date. They are counted but results will not be announced until after 8 PM tonight.
I love it. Not because I minded going to the polls. I was proud to do it. I certainly trust our mail in ballots more than I do the descriptions of the Diebold electronic voting machines. A company that makes ATM’S that give paper receipts apparently can’t make voting machines that can do the same thing.
At least we don’t have to run a gauntlet of partisan observers. In spite of allegations from people as highly placed as George Will, vote by mail doesn’t seem to be more prone to fraud or coercion than any other method. We did use up punch cards up until the last election. I have fond memories of quadruple checking the number on that little dot before I poked it out with my ball point pen.
I just find it painfully ironic that we are spending so much time, so many lives, so much goodwill to “give” the benefits of Democracy overseas and appear so reluctant to grant the same privilege here at home.