Monday, July 21, 2014

Voting for all? Should we limit who votes? Maybe?

Did you know that originally only Land Owners were allowed to vote in America? I've known this for a while but here's a reference for those who need verification.

According to

"When the Constitution was written, only white male property owners (about 10 to 16 percent of the nation's population) had the vote. Over the past two centuries, though, the term "government by the people" has become a reality. During the early 1800s, states gradually dropped property requirements for voting. Later, groups that had been excluded previously gained the right to vote. Other reforms made the process fairer and easier."

That has bugged me for a while now. Why? Well, why do you think that was how it was originally set up? There MUST have been a reason, right? Elitism? Just, elitism? The Founding Fathers were smart guys. Right? I mean, what they had set up has been doing pretty well overall and has been a shining light for equality the world over for a very long time now.

Why then, would they found a country where many were not allowed to vote? I think I have the answer and finally, closure to what has been bugging me more and more over these recent turbulent times. Obviously their justification for not allowing slaves and women to vote, and in many cases, non-land owners, made sense (to them) at the time.

Slaves either didn't understand (lack of education), would do what their owners wanted, or would challenge the concept of slavery in many ways (reasonable assumption and action on the slaves' part). Women would tend to vote their husband's vote (reasonable fear). Non land owners tended to be uneducated and without "stake" in what they would frequently be voting for. All seemed reasonable back then.

I would also argue that had they allowed voting, in time that would all have changed and voters would have become more savvy and interested over time. Especially back then.

Have you heard the nonsense that has been going on in America lately? Voters have been made to have a hard time voting, on purpose. Groups have made it difficult, mostly for certain types of voters, to vote more easily. Something I see as contrary to how it should be. Voting should be getting easier and easier, not harder and harder. Right? But then workers days and hours should also be getting lesser and lesser and they're not.

So what's up?

Have you heard some of the nonsense being touted in the media and our government, mostly from the extreme elements in politics? Why is that, you think?

It is because they want what they want and damn the constituents, what the citizens want, or what is good for the country. Because what is important is only these fringe group's desires and ideals. Mostly issues contrary to public freedoms and based upon religious purposes and agendas.

Not infrequently, ideas have been twisted and raised in such a way as to have people voting against their own best interests and desires. At times elections have been lost, when really they had been won. Gerrymandering has skewed states to one side or the other when really that state was the opposite majority for party. The whole gerrymandering thing has been going on for a very long time and it is, in some situations a good thing, but not when it is abused which it has been and we've been fighting against its misuse from the beginning.

The issue I'm seeing has to do with people realizing they can achieve their own selfish aims if they only push for things that benefit them. This is a format that has always proved to fail in the long term, even for those who push for it. Dictators usually find it doesn't work out so well for them in the end, and we're seeing more and more of that today with instant media (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) because it empowers the people.

On the other hand corporate instant media (like Fox News for instance, even MSNBC in some cases and CNN has turned into a mess), has been working against the people.

Now aside from that, we are seeing more and more people having a voice in the media who should never be talking to anyone outside of their own home. There is a level of ignorance and foolishness in our population that is staggering. Do we really want people like that voting? But it's a Right, you say. How come prisoners can't vote then? Corporations are people and have a right to what, a vote? One vote? How many? Where is THAT headed?

Why aren't people making level headed decisions, casting votes for people and laws who work for them and not against them? Why would women vote for a party that only seems to have their worst interests at heart?

Why are stupid people doing stupid things so much today?

Here, let me give you an example of what I'm talking about. Take a look at this article:

"This Is What Doctors Have To Deal With."

Okay now, do we really need those people voting? Hang on, hang on. Yeah, I know it's a right and all. (Again, can prisoners vote? Why not, if it's a right?)

My point here is things are really screwed up and there's a reason for it. We HAVE to ask ourselves, why? And we have to do something about it. But what?

When you have a group making decisions, and that group fails, what do you do? Change the group, get them better information, acquire subject matter experts.

Do we do that for this? No. Why? Because voting is a "Right" (in quotes because again, prisoners can't vote as well as some others; and well, there's pros and cons to it).

"In 2008 over 5.3 million people in the United States were denied the right to vote because of felony disfranchisement." - Wikipedia

So if they want to vote to make horrible conditions better, they can't. Sounds fair, right?

"Felony disfranchisement was a topic of debate during the 2012 Republican presidential primaryRick Santorum argued for the restoration of voting rights for ex-offenders." - Wikipedia

So even after you're not a prisoner you may not be allowed to vote. Quite a "Right", right?

So we already restrict people from voting. The question is, do we give them back the vote (yes) or do we eliminate others from voting (probably not, though it runs counter to my argument here, but hey, I'm not stupid). 

My point to sum up as quickly as possible is this... There are too many people who don't know what the hell they are doing who are voting for the wrong things. People are working hard to limit people voting who now have a right to vote.

I have a university degree and sometimes I can't figure out what it is I"m trying to vote for in elections because of how things are worded. Essentially, worded on purpose to make people think that voting one way for something is in reality voting the opposite of what they think they are voting. Nuts, right?

So what do I do? I read, do very little necessary research and just figure it out. 

But we obviously have some very serious problems here. 

People are voting for things and don't know what the hell they are voting for. They are being mislead. They are voting against they own best interests. They do not have a vested interest in some things they are voting for (which is why only land owners used to be allowed to vote). 

Look, I'm not asking for us to start cutting voters. But I am asking for something. Real commissions to look into things like gerrymandering and vetting that one party isn't being set up to win, with due and appropriate considerations of surrounding issues to give the nation and not just the party a fair shake. 

We need to give prisoners they vote back.If it's a right, everyone votes, right? Why is that any kind of question?

We need to make it easy for EVERYONE to vote. I haven't been to a voting booth in more years than I can remember but I vote in every election. 

We need to give serious thought to allowing people to vote who have no clue what they are voting for and we need to be sure they can even understand what voting is about and what they are doing. 

Maybe we need some kind of vetting process so that you are allowed to vote, if you at least have the fundamentals of what the hell you are doing and if not, you don't vote that year. I think it would be burdensome to test for each election. 

Testing isn't ridiculous. They test us for driver's licenses (but not for a concealed weapons permit, don't get me started on that one, but hey, it's a "Right", right?). Tell me that voting isn't as dangerous as driving a car. The danger in driving a car is just more immediate and only affects the number of people you can plow down. But voting affects every citizen and even citizens yet to be form; for the long term and sometimes it kills; sometimes, a lot of people (consider ending abortions, gun laws, etc.). 

We have a lot of stupid politics going on, polarizing politics that has frozen Washington DC politics. A republican party that is useless. A democratic party that always seems to be unsure what to do or afraid to do anything serious. Are they gun shy, or what?

These are serious issues that we need to deal with. Because the longer we put of making some hard changes, it's only going to get worse.

Vote. If you can. But know what you are really voting for. Vote those who are bad for America out of office and KNOW what is bad for America. Because that seems to be a thing too hard for many to comprehend now a days. 

To quote a Time magazine article by Reynolds Holding: 

"We should be finding ways to get more voters to the polls, not looking for excuses to keep them away. So instead of prohibiting felons from voting, let's require them to do it. That way, they will continue to repay their debt to society, long after they walk out of prison."
So, what do I really think? What could we do to fix these things?

Everyone should be allowed to vote, if they have at least at a minimum level of understanding, restricted not for who they are but what they can understand; going to jail shouldn't take away your right to vote; nor should being poor, or uneducated; everyone should be REQUIRED to vote who is allowed to vote.

Finally, it should be painlessly easy for all voters to vote.

People need to understand what the hell it means to vote. They need to understand what it means each time in casting that vote. It needs to be made clear to them, what they are voting for, not obfuscating what they are voting for. This trick of trying to confuse voting, so that vote one way is really voting against your wishes, needs to be made illegal. They should, if they have the ability to understand what they are doing, be required to vote, if they are to be an American citizen.

We need as many people as possible, voting. We need to make it cool, a mandatory thing, so that our country is governed by those who know what they are asking for, and will get what they vote for. We need those who vote, to understand what they are voting for. We need to make voting as easy as possible so they don't find it a burden to vote.

We don't need people voting who have no clue what they are doing, either because they are incapable, have no perceived, vested interest, or no resources to make clear to them what they are voting on. Sound expensive? Sound difficult? Isn't what we are seeing today difficult, and costing us massive amounts of money because of big money taking and not giving back; because of our political leaders entrenched in money problems to maintain their positions, in the back pocket of big money; because of the little guys being stepped on, feeling disenfranchised, jailed within their own lifestyles, while others globetrot on the heads of the bulk of what  and who America is?

Is it the American way to run away from a challenge? A conflict? A danger? How about when the conflict is internal, danger is at home, is our own people, our own ignorant masses? What about reasonableness, rationality, honesty, fairness, honor, clarity, education and intelligence? We need to adjust our priorities and be sure that the most sane, most comprehending, are the ones making the decisions and pushing forward our best foot for the most people and not just the privileged few who hedge their bets on the pain of the People.

We need our most educated but not if they only push agendas only for them. We need our least educated but not if they have no clue what they are doing and are acting against their own best interests, much like the poor who vote the rich elite's agendas. We can fix this.

How about we fix this? 

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