Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Your Papers Please...or Voter Fraud Counter-Measures

 American's enjoy several unique options in life, which leads America to be a very unique place to live.  One of the options which has defined America throughout her history has been the right of the citizenry to vote.  This right has given the people a clear voice int he organization and execution of the government.  Well, it used to be clear.
It's no secret that over the last several decades accusations of fraud at the polling places, and in the counting afterward, have been rampant.  Chicago is notorious for having the dead turn out in droves to vote.  And this before we even really started considering the coming zombie apocalypse.  Maybe this is the origin?
What do we do with rampant accusations of voter fraud?  How do we protect the voice of the people?  How do we prevent a phony lip-service-only voting system like exists in much of the world from taking over here?

The below paragraph is how I initially worded it.  Bob S. from 3 boxes of BS has helped me to understand how I was wrong in my original statements.  After this paragraph is the updated version of it, corrected for accuracy and clarification.
Governor Perry in Texas instituted a voter ID check.  The concept is simple, and it seems to be effective.  "Prove you are a citizen, and you get to vote."
Now reads:
Governor Perry in Texas signed into law a voter ID check.  The concept is simple, and it seems to be effective.  "Prove you are who you say you are, and you get to vote."
I now return you to your regularly scheduled blogpost

However, there is some controversy.  There are two sides to every argument; this one, I think, has three.
  1. It's only fair to everyone else participating in the system that all people prove their eligibility to participate in the system.  It has to happen if the system is going to work the way it was intended to work.
  2. There's no need for it.  
  3. This bears too much of a concept of 'Your Papers Please' and is fundamentally opposed to what we as Americans hold to be dear.
Personally, I'm torn between options 1 and 3.  Option 2 I completely disregard, as I firmly believe SOMETHING needs to be done.  However, what that something is, I'm not entirely certain.  I lean toward option 1, as the concept of 'your papers please' is more along the lines of when people are traveling around and are being accosted by law enforcement without provocation or just cause.  Really, since when is 'subversive material' illegal in the US?  Last time I checked, reading material wasn't illegal.
This is different from those evils, and I think a necessary step to take to protect this nation.  There may be a better way to do it, and if there is, I'll be happy to entertain it.  While this is a right of the citizens of this nation to vote, the difference in this case is the citizens voting.  There must be a vested interest in the future success of this great land.  Illegals, the dead, and others have no vested interest in that success.
As Frank said regarding those who oppose this concept:  
"...make them carry the pro-voter fraud label as there is no — NO — logical reason to be against having to prove you can vote before voting other than that you are for voter fraud and think it will help your side."

Please, share your thoughts on this issue!


  1. 2 & 3 are straw men. 2 denies an issue exists, though both parties agree there is one.
    3 is ludicrous not only because we aren't (yet) accosted by law enforcement at polling places, but because of the sheer volumes of other places where you prove ID. Use a credit/debit card for purchases? Show ID. Want to enter the science center or museum on your paid mmbership? Show ID. Want to participate in imbibing at the local pub? Show ID.

    We show ID or prove identity for so many trivial things, to cry foul or nanny-state when asked to prove that you are a member of the "legally allowed to vote" club is foolery.

  2. SuperFast, I would say that 2 isn't a straw man, so much as idiot's argument. As you said, both parties agree an issue exists, and many people around the country have seen or heard about it happening. #2 is more for the willfully ignorant.
    #3, I can see the libertarians taking that stand, and in an ideal world, I might well join them. But when, as you say, we are already displaying it so readily so often, this legitimate use causes that argument to hold no water.
    But please, if anyone has any other objections, or logic, bring it to the table! I don't know everything (yet).

  3. Redeemed Boyd,

    First and foremost Governor Perry has not "instituted a voter ID check.'. What he did was sign a bill --passed by the House and the Senate -- into Law.

    Second, your premise is wrong
    "Prove you are a citizen, and you get to vote."

    Permanent Resident Aliens are allowed to vote in local and state elections -- therefore it would be more accurate to say "Prove you are who you say you are and you get to vote"

    Your eligibility should be checked -- not at the polls -- but when you apply for your Voter Registration card. Something that people should be presenting already.

    There are two separate classes of rights in my opinion (I think I'm on firm ground here) -- natural rights (right to life, self defense, earn a living) and rights based on belonging to the political unit (city, state, county, country).

    It is part of the function of government to insure only those belonging to the political unit participate in the voting.
    I belong to a private gun club, should we allow the neighbors to vote to shut us down, restrict shooting, build a new range, etc?

    No. So proving that you are eligible to vote and you are who you say is a valid exercise in authority.

    #3 is a straw man for a very simple reason; "papers please" is an expression used to indicate interference in the normal private activities of a person's life, not the engagement in political election.

    Papers please -- prove you have been approved to travel out of this city.

    Papers please -- prove you have the right to be in this part of town.

    Papers please -- prove you belong to the right political party/religion/charity group before you can dine at this restaurant/see this movie.

  4. Bob - Good point about my wording of how the law was enacted. I fell into the trap I hear so often about 'so and so instituting this' and the credit for it going to the executive branch of whichever governing body did the enacting. It was a proper bill, passed in the proper way, through legislation and executive approval. Thank you for pointing out my poor phrasing. :)
    Your second point, I failed to consider groups such as legal aliens (permanent residents, for instance). '...you are who you say you are...' is a much better way of stating it, and I will make that update as well.
    I think #3 being a straw man falls in line perfectly with what you said above that:
    "There are two separate classes of rights in my opinion -- natural rights, and rights based on belonging to the political unit."
    In society today, it is far too easy for some to confuse those rights, and move them into the class to which they do not belong. Using simple logic, and an understanding of what the rights entail, and from where we receive those rights, resolves that issue.
    I firmly believe, for this reason, that God as a political concept is vital. Personally, I believe He is much more than that, but politically it is necessary that our rights originate from a power higher than any governing body which may wish to restrict them. Those natural rights are inalienable rights.