Get out the vote?

It seems to me that this whole Kansas Evolution deal illustrates what happens when people vote who shouldn’t. Statistics show that there is a strong correlation between belief in creationism and level of education.

Now, don’t get me wrong.

I’m not suggesting that we restrict voting only to people who have demonstrated intelligence. Only that we shouldn’t make such a deal about people who don’t bother to vote.

I vote. But not in every election.

In Michigan, where I live, it seems like damned near every public official is elected. I know who I support for Congress, President, Governor, and so forth. But, I haven’t a clue who is most qualified to be a trustee at Michigan State, or sit on the board of the Department of Natural Resources, so I don’t place a vote in those races. It just doesn’t seem right that my guess should count just as much as the vote of someone who is informed on the matter.

Likewise, those people who have no idea in the major races should just stay home and have a cookout if they are off work on election day.

Of course, the better choice would be for those people to get informed, but barring that, I would rather they didn’t vote.

That is why I am against things like automatic voter registration, etc. If you can’t take the time to register, you must not have thought enough about it to vote intelligently.

Well, at least that’s how I see it.

[qoute]It just doesn’t seem right that my guess should count just as much as the vote of someone who is informed on the matter.

This is exactly why I oppose the whole initiative process (at least the way we do it here in California). Having voters vote for laws is like bagging your own groceries. There’s already someone there who is getting paid to do it and who does it much better than you can. Lawmakers have whole staffs to pick apart proposed laws and predict the ramifications. All I have is 2 paragraphs in a voter’s handbook and the paid advertising of the propositions’ proponents and opponents.

As a voter, the only thing I should have to decide is the worthiness of my representatives. If I’m stupid enough to think that a rightwing, ultrareligious Luddite would make a worthy schoolboard member; so be it. That’s democracy.

Kid_Gilligan says:

And therein lies how the Kansas School Board came to be run by Papabear’s luddites. The right is better organized at these kinds of things. Do you think all the people who ran out and elected the school board in Kansas knew anything about the background of the candidates? Of course not! They got voter’s guides from their pastors or their Creationists Now contact or somebody like that. Meanwhile, well-meaning people like you (and me, I’ve been guilty here) sit out.

The good news is we can play too! Not as well as the right does, but still. Some group somewhere has a voter’s guide that you can use in most circumstances. Your political party? The Union of Concerned Scientists? Somebody has it. If you’re like me, it’ll turn out to be different groups for different offices. It takes a little trust, even if you agree with your chosen groups’ politics, but IMHO its better than sitting out and letting the bad guys win.

So rather than hoping the other side doesn’t vote, or making it difficult to register, vote! Get informed or trust someone who is informed.

Livin’ on Tums, Vitamin E and Rogaine

I’m from Chicago. I didn’t know you had to go out to vote. Usually, my alderman’s “assistant” comes by on election day and says something like, “I figured you were gonna vote fur Flannigan, so I just cast a vote for ya. Oh ya, and I cast a ballot for your dead husband too, cuz I knew if he was alive he’d want Flannigan in there. Oh, and yer dog registered to vote this morning, too. Guess what? He’s a Flannigan supporter too! Damn, everybody loves that Flannigan! You ain’t got no problem with that, do ya?”

“I think it would be a great idea” Mohandas Ghandi’s answer when asked what he thought of Western civilization

Manhattan said:

Or, better yet, get your hands on the voter’s guide used by the creationist or Christian Coalition folks, and vote against every one they give high ratings to. :slight_smile:

Actually, David, I’ve done that very thing. Especially if it is a race for something like school board. Alas, my vote hasn’t made a whole hell of a lot of difference here. . .


Flick Lives!

I’m deeply ashamed to admit that such a simple, effective and eloquent idea has never occurred to me. Thanx for the tip.

Livin’ on Tums, Vitamin E and Rogaine

Well, GL, I know it gets disheartening when you vote one way and lots of others vote the other way – making it seem like your vote doesn’t matter – but that just means you have to get more people who agree with you to vote! :slight_smile: In the previous election, I purposely registered Republican just to vote for the moderate who was running against the arch-conservative-religious-right-nutcase. Alas, the a-c-r-r-n won (as usual). But I tried. This coming election I think I’m going to try to help a guy who’s running for Congress in the district next to mine (used to live there, not any more). He’s running against an a-c-r-r who tries to act like he’s not one. Unfortunately, the a-c-r-r in my district has such a tight grip on the seat that nobody even wants to bother to run against him.

Arch conservative religious right nutcase!

I like that it has a new ring. Out here in the land of H Hyde, my guess is most people who vote, either vote by party or name recognition and don’t have a clue what the people they vote for actually believe in.

nice ring, not new ring

Fairfax County, VA, held its first-ever school board elections about four years ago. There were seven fairly normal candidates and three acrrn’s, including one woman who objected to the fact that the seventh-grade literature textbook contained stories about death. This candidate actually stated in her campaign literature that she didn’t think it was appropriate to teach “depressing literature” in school!

Guess who won? The three candidates who came first in alphabetical order, including you-know-who. Sigh.