Saturday, August 25, 2012

Pennsylvania-Voter Repression

Polling Place - Election Day November 2, 2004 East Brandywine Township, Pennsylvania - Hopewell Methodist Church  (I am in the yellow shirt)

The picture at the beginning of this blog is of me taken at the Hopewell Methodist Church basement in East Brandywine Township, Downingtown, Pennsylvania.  The date was Election Day November 2, 2004.  Yes, that is me in the yellow shirt at the head of the table.  I was a poll worker.  In fact, I was the lone Democrat poll worker (and thus in great demand) in heavily Republican township that I lived in at that time.  I loved my job as a poll worker.  It was a very long day which tarted at 6 a.m. in the morning and not ending until we turned in the ballots at around 8:30 pm that night at the county seat of West Chester, PA.  I didn't mind the long day, because I was doing something I loved.

I love meeting people (and man oh man did I meet a LOT of people who came to vote), plus I have always been interested in civics ever since my Civics class in high school with Mr. Caskey.  Since I  moved to Delaware, I don't work the polls now. I offered to work but there was no interest in my volunteering.  So this year I will vote like everyone else.

Although I miss my poll worker days, I'm glad I don't live in Pennsylvania now with their new restrictive voter registration law, which is the most regressive and unfair in the nation.  Again Pennsylvania has the distinction of being an asshole regressive state.  That's one of the many reasons I moved from Pennsylvania.  Of course the main reason I move, which I've stated many times in this blog was because of the runaway taxes which were literally taxing me out of my home.

Pennsylvania is a beautiful state, with it's rolling hills, winding roads and deep history.  The years Bill and I lived in center city Philadelphia were the most memorable of my life.  Our home on a wooded hillside in East Brandywine Township outside of Downingtown was a paradise.  We lived there for twenty-five years.  We were forced to move because we could no longer afford the taxes.  Bill still pines for our former home in Pennsylvania.

I still have many friends in Pennsylvania.  I miss seeing them. We used to visit our former home Pennsylvania on a regular basis when the new owners of our former home walked away from it and the home went into foreclosure.   We felt like we were watching an abandoned child wither away and die.  We were so happy when a nice young couple brought our former home last year and is now restoring it to its previous glory.  We now have no reason to visit Pennsylvania.

Every year when election time rolls around I feel pangs of sadness knowing that I will never work the election voting place at the Hopewell Church on Hopewell Road which was just around the corner from where we lived.  However, this year it is just as well because if I was working the polls I would not insist on seeing a voter ID from that little old lady who doesn't have a birth certificate, doesn't drive and doesn't have a driver's license.  No, I could not and would not participate in voter repression which is what my former home state is engaged in now.

So long Pennsylvania,  the state where I was born and grew up.  So long Pennsylvania, one of the original thirteen colonies for fought for independence and the right to vote for EVERY person.  So long Pennsylvania, I hope someday you will return to the beautiful and free state that respected the individual that you once were.


anne marie in philly said...

I am going to refuse to show ID and see what happens. I have been voting in the same place for 12 years. my signature is on the record books. corbett and his minions are NOT going to remove my right to vote!

Ron said...

Anne Marie,

I'm glad I'm not the poll worker who has to ask you for your I.D.! :)


Ur-spo said...

Pretty state, PA, in the autumn - I used to go there to see the colours and go to Civil War places adn antique shops.

Ron said...

Dr. Spo,

The geography of Pennsylvania is beautiful. There is so much of interest both historical and current in Pennsylvania. However, much of the state legislature and now the governor are terrible. Pennsylvania's high taxes made it impossible for me to continue living there and now their regressive politics have only made things worse.