Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Voting

Yesterday I voted. It has already been well-established in this blog that I am one of the most uninformed voters out there, but at least according to the letter, if not the spirit, of the thing, I did my citizenly duty. Going into the voting booth for me is kind of like going in to take a standardised test that I didn't study for . . . only less stressful. I guess I'm still kind of cynical that my vote matters. It's just that I kind of feel like my non-vote matters. It would be so much easier if I were a member of a particular political party but that, my friends, goes against the grain.

You knew that.

Anyway, yesterday I was in line waiting to go into the booth and this woman I knew was two people behind me and this woman she knew was between us and saying wouldn't it be so much better if you could just go to a voting center in any city, and they could scan the barcode on the back of your driver's license, and you could vote wherever was closest to where you worked.

"Yes!" I agreed emphatically, although I had never met this woman before in my life. "Also," I added, "it would be really great if you could vote for the district and precinct where you worked instead of where you lived." I mean, look. I might actually get more into local and state-level politics if I could do this. I sleep (and watch Netflix) in my Hometown. I work and do just about everything else in the City. The children and teens with whom I work--my own "constituents"--live in the City. I have no idea what's going on in the district in which my Hometown participates, and therefore my vote is even less informed than it would be otherwise, because frankly, until we adopt a dictatorship (which could happen, I guess), whoever I vote for there is not going to affect my sleeping and watching Netflix.

On the other hand, I actually personally knew some of the candidates for office in the City's district, and their presence or absence in office might actually impinge on the people I'm working with and for, or even on my work itself. I get paying property taxes and such to the town where one lays one's head. I also get that for the sake of simplification of bureaucracy, allowing people to vote where they worked would probably not . . . work. (On the other hand, when else has simplification of bureaucracy been a real consideration for the way politics happen?) But I still think it would ultimately be more relevant and effective. That's my vote.

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