"Renaissance Thinking About the Issues of Our Day"
Poll taxes? I thought those were against the constitution? At least the amendment I read, but don't recall when it was passed, but suspect it was prior to the 1950's.
As to the remarks of those others, in particular, my response is a bored, "whatever." The Supreme Court has succeeded in neutering the voting rights of all Americans except those of the very, very wealthy, those who can buy our elections. Our founders are spinning in their graves, while we are trying to figure out how to take back the vote, for we the people.
My mother was a lifelong political activist. She and her "fellow" League-of-Women-Voters members, unpaid poll-watchers all, dug into their own pockets to pay the poll taxes for the folks who otherwise would not have been able to vote ($0.50 per voter in the early-to-mid '50s in northern Virginia). By the way, the polling places were the schools, closed statewide on Election Day! What better way to teach children the importance of voting?!
The League members also organized among themselves a pool of drivers to drive car-less people to the polls. When my father returned home after a politically-charged day at the Pentagon, and after voting (of course), he and my mother openly discussed the nuances of the current election while preparing dinner, thus providing daily civics lessons to my brothers and me. There was something about those discussions, their underlying fervor, perhaps, that caught our attention and the message has remained with us. I took up the challenge when my children were small by inviting them into the voting booth with me and showing them how to use the machine (mechanical, in those days), and teaching them the significance of having placed their vote when they pulled the lever, followed up with watching the election-night returns, and they "got" it!
In the Spring of 1992 Bill Clinton's campaign headquarters opened in Montclair (NJ). At that time the electorate of our township was 89% Democratic (what a treat)! My "children," then young men aged 14 and 17, walked past the Clinton headquarters every day on their way home from school, and before long they both volunteered to do phone-banking after school (with absolutely no urging from me)--I am still proud of them for that!
As they were doing their part by telephoning prospective voters while I was driving home from work, I asked how I could help and they mentioned that the campaign needed volunteers to drive people to the polls on election day—a song with a chord familiar to me :-). I signed up, of course, took the day off from work and drove people all day and into the evening. And Bill won on the wave of the collective effort of everyone in this country who found him refreshing and was enchanted by his optimism. I was first enchanted at hearing him interviewed, with Hillary, on NPR in Oct '91. When I heard that interview, driving home in the dark from a job working for the president of a company being outsourced to West Virginia (at that time the states were competing for the manufacturing resources in this country), I was enthralled and thought, "Now THAT is someone I can vote for!!"
Years later (in 2003), I met him on a London-to-JFK flight (I wish I could find the photos right now, but NOT)—while shaking hands with him in the bulkhead of between Business and First(I was obviously pleased!) I told him how much I admired him and stated, “Not only did I VOTE for you twice, I drove OTHER PEOPLE to the polls to vote for you both times!!” To which he responded by asking, “Where are you from,” and when I told him “Montclair, New Jersey” he grinned widely and exclaimed, “You didn’t just VOTE for me twice, y’all ELECTED me twice!!” Biggest thrill of my life, even bigger than being hoisted up from the lawn by Adlai Stevenson when I was 5! :-)
In California, you can just go vote. They just want your signature.
Adding words to a yes or no always seems to be words that make each biased to whomever is posing the question.... shame on you, Thom
Stop adding your words to a yes or no vote! I don't like you putting words in my vote! It will keep illegals and those not allowed to vote out of the voting place or they might fight to get their voting rights the legal way!!!!