I got to tell you, Americans are the most innovative people in the world. And, when that talent runs amuck, you get some interesting gyrations and distortions–particularly in the world of politics.
For some years now I have had to show my driver’s license with photo ID to check into a hotel, even a small motel. I have certainly had to show my photo ID to get on an airplane, or anywhere near a gate even. I even had to show my photo ID to pick up an order I placed online at Target. And I certainly had to show my photo ID to get into my own safe deposit box.
The reason? They want to make sure that I am who I say I am, and not committing a fraud by getting into a safety deposit box, or hotel, or picking up merchandise, when I am not the person listed. Just our name is no longer sufficient. We have to prove who we are everywhere. And I don’t disagree with that.
The most sacred right a US citizen has is the right to vote. We aspire to it when we are young and look forward to the day we can participate in the democratic process. Immigrants coming to the United States are thrilled when they get citizenship, and can now weigh in with more than just an opinion.
Yet, the number of people bleating loudly that it is somehow unconstitutional–or worse yet racist, or xenophobic–to ask to show our photo ID in the form of a voter registration card is skyrocketing every day. Somehow proving who you are and that you are in fact a legally registered voter is an act of “voter suppression.” Forget the illogic that anyone registered who wants to vote won’t mind, and someone trying to cheat the system in some way–whether voting without being registered, or voting for someone else, or voting multiple time–will be deterred by it. No, the argument is that somehow certain groups of Americans will be so terrified to even have to produce proof that they registered and that they are who they say they are, that they will not even vote. And, therefore there vote will be “suppressed” by this heinous act of carrying a voter registration document.
Hogwash. That leaves our precious system open to fraud–plain and simple. And I would like to suggest that someone who fears their vote may be suppressed step up and insure that fraud can not occur. In other words, take some responsibility for the system they want to be part of–warts and all.
But, the creativity in the last few days has sunk to a new, and frightening level. A politician by the name of Castro in Texas decided to post information that, while available in the public domain if someone wanted to search for it, would normally remain private. He decided to post the names of those who had contributed money to the Trump campaign, and the employers of those people. In an attempt to shame them, or get them fired, boycotted or killed, the action sinks to a new and very dangerous low.
When did we turn into a totalitarian state where you can be pilloried for your thoughts, and your expression of your thoughts or the expenditure of YOUR money? When did we elect officials who think they can stifle not only your right to participate in our democratic process, but also cause harm to anyone who dares employ you?
Now that, my friends, is “Voter Suppression.” Scare you and your employer so much that you don’t dare show up to vote. You don’t dare contribute to the causes you believe in, or the people who may need your financial contribution.
The last time I checked, this was still America. Or is it? No matter your party, or your ardent beliefs, this should scare you. It should rock you to the core. This time it happened to Trump supporters. Next time it will happen to you. Make no mistake. This is about power and control, and if you dare cross the likes of “Mr. Castro”–and his/her counterpart in the future–you may find yourself wearing a “Star of David” on your sleeve, or hunkered down in your home because there is an angry mob outside your door.
The question you should ask yourself is: What if the “mob” decides to breach my door? Will I be able to protect myself?
For now, I suggest that the people of Texas whose vote sent him into government exercise their right to vote and send him “home.” (Not to some other country. Send him back to his house, and un-elect him.)
He blatantly engaged, in my opinion, in an act of Voter Suppression and worse. Use your vote. Defeat him in his next election.