Yes, Voter ID Laws: What’s the Problem? : ThyBlackMan.com

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Yes, Voter ID Laws: What’s the Problem?

August 7, 2012 by  
Filed under News, Opinion, Politics, Weekly Columns

(ThyBlackMan.com) A week from today I will head to a nearby apartment complex to cast my vote in the Florida Primary. When I walk into the precinct I will happily hand over my ID to the poll worker who will then direct me to a private booth to do my citizen’s duty. I have absolutely no problem being asked for ID to vote. You have to have ID to register to vote in the first place. Why should anybody take your word for who you say you are without some kind of proof. (Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the country.) While I don’t agree with the Republican argument behind the need for voter ID i.e. voter fraud, I don’t see how this specific tenet of new voting laws will disenfranchise all voters.

My mother always taught me to have an ID no matter where I go. I had a state ID as a child which then became a driver’s license at the age of 16. I’ve been carrying ID since I knew what a purse and a wallet were and I don’t see why other people simply can’t do the same. If you’re older and no longer drive why don’t you automatically change your license into a state ID? If you are young and don’t have ID how else are you getting through life? Identity has to be  verified for a job, for any type of government benefits, and even to receive coupons at most stores. While I know the statistics of those who don’t have ID I still don’t understand why.

If the argument is on the principle that voter ID laws will lead to other pre-emptive measures to keep people who typically vote Democrat from voting I wholly understand but don’t agree. The ACLU and the League of Women voters by all means should sue states for voting laws like Florida that will purge the voter rolls of eligible voters. Voting rights and civil rights groups by all means should sue states like Florida, Pennsylvania, Indiana and Ohio for voting laws that limit the number of days of early voting, squeeze the time between a registration drive and when those documents should be turned in, decrease the number of precincts in heavily populated areas, and make votes by mail from members of the military or any other count less than a standard vote. Those fights should be fought in court every day until November 6, 2012 and after. The fight on simply showing ID is a losing game.

In high school and maybe now even in some middle and elementary school students must have an ID to prove they belong to that institution. The same in college. If you are paying for something by check or credit card a cashier may ask you for ID. You can’t get into Sam’s Club or Costco without it. If you drive without ID and are caught you are ticketed at the least and taken to jail in the worst case scenario. In this country there is no life without ID. This notion a poll worker shouldn’t question your identity on one of the most important decisions affecting the country is absolutely preposterous.

I say fight the fight to diminish the voice of the people by targeting the elderly, minorities, or ex-cons who in some states do regain the right to vote after serving their time. That is a fight worth having to keep the democracy honest, the election process veritable, and the results the work and the will of the people. But the argument that having an ID to vote is a burden is lost on me. Just about everyone I know including my over 80 year old grandmother has an ID. While she may get peeved to have to dig it out of her purse at the precinct before being allowed to vote. She still has it.

In a country where you can’t fly from state to state without showing your ID at least twice, it makes no sense the petty arguments being had over showing ID at the polls.

The voter ID fight I believe will be a failure among Democrats if that becomes the basis of the argument to repeal or block new voting laws in states with Republican majorities. Instead the fight should focus on making sure the marginalized aren’t further diminished in an effort to seal victories for candidates through calumnous ways that will actually make a difference in the future of this country. Voter ID is not one of those ways. Deliberately limiting the right to vote by limiting people’s access to vote is a fight worth going 10 rounds and then some.

What is the best way to make sure all eligible voters are allowed to vote?

Staff Writer; Nikesha Leeper

To connect with this sister feel free to visit; Change Comes Slow.

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Comments

5 Responses to “Yes, Voter ID Laws: What’s the Problem?”
  1. xhen says:

    everyone has id – to go on food stamps/HUD housing/city-state benefits – cashing checks – wic -everyone has ID – our uncle gets ssi – he needed an id – our family is not from this country. I work with many other foreign born peoples and we do have our ids. In fact the men i work with when they get their checks go directly to bank to cash checks as they are not really legally supposed to work but the mexican government consulate(s) ( and thru out usa) with californian has an ok to work going on. they show their californiamexican approved id card and then there is no problem,
    all other countries have laws that one must carry id all times period.

  2. EricTx says:

    I agree with most of the article. There is no reason for minorities to not have an ID. People can claim that it disenfranchises the poor blacks, but I’ve seen the poor spending money in the club, buying certain luxuries such as jewelry, electronics, and getting hair and nails done. This subject is never a problem during the 3 years leading up to the election. It only come to the forefront during the election year. It’s also funny that this administration took our tax dollars and bought HD receivers for the poor and disenfranchised. Getting HD tv is not a basic necessity. Why couldn’t the administration pay for ID’s for the disenfranchised? If any of you has noticed, we have an illegal immigration problem. A lot of these laws are being made to ensure a person is a U.S. citizen. It’s not that prominent up north yet, but it’s coming. Also, a lot of college students go to school out of state. It only makes sense that they vote absentee in their state of record. It is unfair to locals if students from out of state get to vote in elections in the community in which they go to school. If the military can vote on absentee ballots, so can the students.

  3. Nicholas says:

    If every person was as correct as the author, with her background and her presice grip on life, I say hooray for her. However, just having ID is not that simple for every otherwise elgible voter in this country. It’s no accident that the states that are enacting these voter suppression laws, are all GOP controlled. ID is just one component of the war on people who are likely to vote Democratic.

  4. Nikesha says:

    I admit I did overlook type but even with the timing voter ID still shouldn’t be the focus it should be the other issues tied in the voting laws which limits and restricts voters in more ways than lack of ID ever could. If the laws passed in 2009 they still would have been ahead of midterms so it would have been an issue than too. The reason it happened in 2011 and this year is because that’s when republicans and the tea party regained control of congress and gubernatorial races. Timing is of no consequence if the narrative is wrong.

  5. James says:

    Your overall premise is correct…there is nothing wrong validating the ID of a voter. But what you get wrong are the obvious problems with the laws…timing and the type of ID required.

    Timing:
    If voter ID laws were passed just after the 2008 election, perhaps the fears of many would be mitigated. But most were proposed in 2011, have not passed yet, or those that will were either just passed a few months ago or will within a matter of months (days from the election). Why would anyone want to pass a law that statistically speaking would affect an overwhelming number of those who vote…and at the same time not provide the timing needed to make adjustments? Simple…you don’t want voters to show up. I’m an independent and quite frankly Obama and Romney are the same to me. But chew on this statistic. In EVERY election where there were overwhelming numbers, Democrats won…every time. Guess what party is pushing for the sudden law change? Or let me phrase it another way. Guess what party benefits when there is a significant decrease in the numbers that show up to vote? I think you see where this is going.

    Type:
    This is another issue I think you overlooked. The new laws in many locals invalidate what used to be an acceptable form of ID or adds new forms. For example in my state, student IDs are no longer acceptable but a gun permit is. This same trend is being seen in locals across the US. It’s like someone playing a massive game. And the funny thing is, none of the laws have the potential to affect the entire population…just mainly students, minorities, and the elderly (all of whom voted democrat generally speaking) in previous elections.

    So in the end you have a confusion concerning the type of ID mixed with a rush to pass and implement.

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