(Click for AUDIO VERSION)
I guess I am one of those citizens who doesn't understand what all the fuss is regarding voter identification cards. For as long as I can remember, I have always had such a card and cannot imagine voting without it. I certainly do not want someone else to vote on my behalf and I would hope election officials would verify all of the voters are eligible to do so. Besides, why should voting be any different than all of the other things we do requiring proper identification, for example:
* To operate an automobile.
* To register a vehicle.
* To open a bank account.
* To purchase or lease a house, condo, or apartment.
* To obtain a loan for a mortgage, car or anything else of substance.
* To start a job (needed for government reporting requirements).
* To apply for government aid or benefits, such as unemployment, social security, etc.
* To play or coach an organized sport, such as Little League.
* To be an adult leader in a Boy/Girl Scout Troop.
* To enter the military.
* To board an airplane or ship.
* To visit a foreign country.
* To purchase a gun.
* To make an in-store purchase using a check.
* To purchase alcohol.
* To visit a school campus, college, or company.
* To serve on a jury.
* To obtain a library card.
* To deposit garbage in the local dump.
That's right, you need proper identification to dump garbage, at least that's the way it is here in Pinellas County, Florida. There really aren't too many things you can do without some form of identification. Yet, there are people who balk at requiring proper identification to vote in elections, one of our most sacred duties as citizens, a task that is far more important than garbage disposal.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), 32 states require some form of identification for voting; 18 do not, neither does the District of Columbia or our protectorates, such as Puerto Rico. In terms of the anticipated swing states for the upcoming election, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas require voter identification. However, New York, Illinois, and California do not.
Remarkably, Mexican citizens require a photo ID to vote in their country. In addition, the voter card has become the accepted way to prove one's identity, to open a bank account, board an airplane and buy beer. The Mexicans clearly understand the value of a valid identification card, why don't the Americans? Is it because someone has some ulterior motive for voting? Bottom-line, there is no valid reason for not having voter identification. It's a no-brainer.
Keep the Faith!
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Copyright © 2012 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.