Categorized | Editorial

EDITORIAL: It’s Insulting

At a recent Perth Amboy Council Meeting, early voting was a hot topic. Speakers came up to the podium to voice their opinions on the subject and what some said was rather disturbing to me.

The speaker that said that denying early voting would prevent minorities from this right. Minorities or immigrants need to have the intricacies of voting explained to them.

Personally I am tired of some people treating minorities as if they are children and need to be force fed information or sometimes tests have to be dumbed down for in order minorities to pass them.

In this age of computers, it is very easy for people to prepare for tests, especially when the tests can be downloaded in their native tongue. I hear that even the driving tests are given in 10 languages plus in audio.

Remember that minorities and immigrants had it much harder in the past. There was not the luxury of having an election ballot printed in more than one language and sometimes they had to have police protection at the polls.

Here’s a thought. There is approximately 22,000 registered voters in Perth Amboy. When the elections School Board elections were held in May not many people voted, perhaps about 2% so are you telling me this was because we didn’t have early voting? I would call it perhaps plain voter apathy! You could have given them 8 months in advance to vote and they would have chosen to sit it out instead of dance!

As far as asking for ID’s, I never had a problem with that. If you need help getting an ID, call on your local political party. I’m sure they will be glad to help. I have a suggestion for all political parties. Why don’t you have a campaign year round urging young people to register to vote as soon as they are eligible, not only when it is election time.

I never had a drivers license (to operate a motor vehicle) but I made sure to get a non-drivers ID from the DMV for identification purposes only.

How many times have you been asked to produce an ID just for ordinary purchases. Go into any store that sells cigarettes and you will see a sign that says, “Must show ID to purchase cigarettes if you are age 40 or younger.”

I think most places recognize the ages between 18+ as an adult depending on the state.

Think about when you were younger or even today if you go to a club. Some of them state you have to be above a certain age to enter the club. You have to produce an ID to get in. I’m sure not many people have a problem with that.

If you go into a casino there are guards right there. If you look too young you better have identification. If you take a bus trip to a casino, a package is offered. If this is your first time, in order for you to receive that package, you must show an ID. If you don’t have the proper ID, you will be denied that package.

So it is ironic that a person finds it racist when you ask to produce an ID to vote. But in other circumstances it is quite okay.

Identification theft is very prevalent and even the government computers have been hacked. How many times have you heard where even bank accounts have been compromised by hackers?

Having an ID is a very good thing. They even caution people who are runners, especially if they are by themselves to have some sort of ID on them. So those who say ID’s should not be asked when people vote. I have one question for them: What would you do if you went to vote and found someone has voted under your name? I think the first thing out of your mouth would be: Why didn’t you ask them for ID?

Now my curiosity is getting the best of me. I say bring on the Early Voting. Let’s see how many people truly take advantage of it. As far as the ID issue goes, do what ever you have to do to get one and don’t be upset if they ask you to produce it when you go to vote. I always bring mine with me.

If you truly want to vote, you’ll do whatever it takes to register. That is what your political party is for. Use them. Just remember, dead people have been known to vote. Your thoughts on this are welcome and they will be published. Suggested reading: A book called, “The Pact.”


One Response to “EDITORIAL: It’s Insulting”

  1. James Devine says:

    Your editorial “It’s Insulting” reflects a narcissistic vantage of someone blessed with luxury and opportunity, while the people most in need of fair voting laws and easy access are the poor and dispossessed in our society.

    As a person of color, the Amboy Guardian’s publisher surely cannot claim that America has always been fair to minorities and I do not have to be among those groups to recognize that they are more likely to get shafted.

    Unemployment among the young and very old is far greater than it is among middle-aged people. Black and Hispanic families are two or three times as likely to suffer the ill-effects of joblessness compared to the white population. Women are still paid only 77 cents for every dollar earned by men in similar or equal jobs.

    Denying there is a problem is one of the best ways to prevent a solution. Voting in America is under attack by the same forces that have tilted the tax system away from the richest one percent and giant corporations. Bank of America, General Electric and many other profitable Fortune 500 companies paid zero federal income taxes. Can the Amboy Guardian say the same?

    Voter ID laws infringe upon the most basic rights of citizens for no reason. There is no evidence to support claims of voter fraud on a significant level, but voters are subject to more scrutiny than firearms buyers at a gun show.

    Al Gore lost the 2000 presidential election because of cheating and voter suppression in Florida. Since then, Republicans have been pushing to make voting harder for seniors, young people, and ethnic minority groups that largely comprise a disproportionate share of the impoverished people in America.

    While anyone who could be button-holed into one of these groups might take exception at having the state make provisions one feels are unnecessary, this battle is not a suggestion that you cannot fend for yourself. It is a confrontation of evil that unfairly falls upon people who may be like you in some ways, but clearly have much greater problems than you do.

    I am incredibly grateful to have been born in the second half of the 20th Century in the world’s richest and most powerful nation, because that has made convenience and abundance accessible in ways that our ancestors could never have imagined. In fact, people elsewhere on this planet live far more challenging lives than many poor Americans.

    None of that negates the extreme evil and fundamentally unAmerican Republican policy initiatives that would prevent minorities or immigrants from voting. Go ahead and be insulted, but doing so neglects the injuries inflicted on those for whom special protections are not an insult but a necessity.


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