Wednesday, May 30, 2012

I'm So Glad I Voted in the Texas Primary

So yesterday was Primary Day in Texas. I cast my vote in the Democratic primary.

I only did it for the sticker. I love the sticker.
It was the high point of my day. Not because democracy in action gives me a huge rush (although, yeah, it's pretty good shit), but because of the awesomeness that unfolded at the polling place.

Now, I live in a middle-class suburb of Dallas. This means I had every right to expect to see tumbleweeds slowly rolling through the Democrats' designated voting site.

Actual location of polling place. Really. Would I lie?
Instead, the joint was hopping. There was a steady flow of people in and out. True, it was a mere 30 minutes before the polls closed, so I figured I was part of the final rush to cast a ballot. Maybe all 26 non-Republicans in the entire city had shown up at once to register their meaningless choices.

My first clue that I was wrong - in an unbelievably awesome way - was a sign taped to the front door. I failed to take a picture of it because I was busy scratching my head, but I swear to God it said this:

Yes, in pink marker.
 Which was an interesting sentiment to post on the door of the city library.

Well, I'm not exactly a Democrat - I'm more of a Pig-Headed Independent - but I was there to vote in the Democratic primary, so I went inside. There was a pretty substantial line of people waiting to enter the voting area. Again, sort of surprising, given the pronounced righty slant of my adopted hometown. But there was about the makeup of the assembled electorate.

These people were, for lack of a better word, well appointed. The men were wearing pressed khaki shorts and designer shoes with no socks. The women carried small, chic purses that were designed to hold credit cards and smartphones. Nobody seemed happy or relaxed. They all looked as if they had somewhere much more important to be than here, performing their messy civic duty.

In short, these people looked like Republicans.

Not shown: Pipe, slippers, sense of entitlement.
And sure enough, about nine in ten of these prospective voters were being turned away by a very tired-looking woman with a clipboard. Which made them look even less happy and relaxed.

In a nutshell, here's what happened. Several weeks ago, a letter was sent to every registered voter in town. That letter included the designated polling place for either the Republican or Democratic primary, based on the recipient's previous voting record. Unfortunately, a glitch occurred, and apparently every single person had been instructed to show up at the Democratic voting location.

Ha. Hahaha. HahahahaHAAAAAAAhahahaha!

I'm sorry, that's not funny. Not funny at all.

Now look what you've gone and done.
In all seriousness, I felt really bad for the poor lady who had to ask every person if they were a  Democrat or a Republican and then inform the latter they were in the wrong place and had approximately 20 minutes to get across town to Romneypalooza. Because those uptight  middle-aged conservatives were uniformly pissed. And they were taking it out on this poor sweet-faced hippie lady who surely thought she was going to have a nice, quiet day with the bare handful of like-minded souls who live around here.

That part was pretty uncool. But here's what was totally awesome:
  • Watching middle-class suburbanites get angry in that huffy, repressed way of theirs.
"Can you believe it, I'm stuck at the library surrounded by commoners.
Lay off half my staff and corner the market on soybeans, will you?"
  • Seeing the steady influx of fresh-scrubbed Republicans walking into the library, proudly bearing their voter registration cards with no idea they were about to be told "no" by a Democrat.
  • Breezing past the milling, confused crowd straight into the voting area.
  • Making the woman who signed me in laugh when I congratulated her on creating so many disgruntled Republicans.
And then I voted and got my little sticker, and I felt warm all over. Then I bought a bottle of vodka and felt even warmer.

Here's the thing, people of Earth. Yesterday morning, I got on the Intertubes and double-checked my polling location. Mostly because I had lost the letter I received immediately after receiving it, but also because I didn't want to waste my time showing up at the wrong place. I went to the website of the local Democratic Party, entered my name and birthday, and boom - it told me where to vote, showed me a sample ballot, and gave me a swell recipe for organic lentil casserole to boot.

And taught me some killer changes for
"I Shall Be Released."
Damn lefty pinko Internet, giving out information to the unwashed masses. Pretty soon they'll be wanting the vote. Oh, wait.

Seriously, five minutes on the computer and I got to experience the rare thrill of feeling better than a Republican. And renewed my right to bitch and moan about the government by voting.

America: Oh Hell Yes.
I'm so glad I got my democracy on.

Don't worry, local Republicans; you'll get your laughs in November, when you undoubtedly will retain your iron grip on democracy's balls in Texas.

God bless America. Hugz.

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