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Thread: Voting

  1. #21
    NI FORT fan Belfastgirl's Avatar
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    Am I right in saying that in the US you must make a conscious effort to register, i.e. going somewhere to fill in a form? In Britain people are employed every year to deliver electoral roll forms to houses. They then return to collect them. They can also help people to fill in their forms, particularly the elderly. Therefore the vast majority of people are on the register even if they decide not to vote. Surely a democracy like America should be making an effort to ensure that their citizens have a voice. Do minorites especially recent immigrants whose English may not yet be proficient have a voice in the electoral process?

  2. #22
    Anachronism before Noon Cat Bowling Champion Anemic Dog's Avatar
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    Recent immigrants probably aren't eligible to vote yet. I think we're pretty good, but the system is only as good as the volunteers who run the polling places and the city administrators who sign people up.

    Unfortunately, the quality of these volunteers and administrators declines in areas of higher poverty, where it's more likely that people who don't know English well reside.

    I don't think it would cost-effective to go door-to-door. And perhaps politically incorrect as well. Fighting the concept of a national ID card is a major issue in poorer areas. Our government is scared to death of appearing politically incorrect.
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  3. #23
    FORT Fogey captain's Avatar
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    The state I live requires by law that the area I am in prints voting ballots in English and Spanish
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  4. #24
    Swinging in the hammock Ilikai's Avatar
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    thats funny because to become a citizen of the US you have to have to be able to understand english both vocally and reading/writing. So then why do they have to print ballots in spanish when only citizens can vote and you have to be able to read english to be a citizen and vote.
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  5. #25
    FORT Fogey
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    In TESOL (Teachers of English for Speakers of Other Languages) class, they taught us that when you learn a second language, you usually develop your BICS (Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills), which means the ability to have "conversational" levels of proficeincy, within 2-5 years, give or take. You develop your CALP (Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency), which is what many consider "fluency", in about 5-7 years. So while you may understand English enough to read, converse, or even pass the tests, it can still be difficult. There is a BIG push in this country right now to make things more accessible for those whose first language is not English, hence the need for translations. I don't know if that's the case with the ballots , it's just a guess on my part. (Sorry for the lecture, it was the 'teacher' coming out in me )

  6. #26
    Livin' the life Dinahann's Avatar
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    I work as a State of Texas employee, and I am required to ask all of my clients if they would like to register to vote. If they want to, I give them a voter registration form and help them fill it out, then mail it in for them. it never ceases to amaze me how many people aren't registered and aren't interested in being registered. I can't remember a time when I wasn't interested in politics in some form or fashion. I have testified in Texas Legislative hearings, have picketed, and write my Senator and Representative often. I am not always satisfied with the results, but I chose to voice my opinions often to my political leaders.

    Voter apathy is such a dangerous thing. I get frustrated when people say that their vote doesn't count. It most certainly does, but only if you make the effort to VOTE !
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  7. #27
    FORT Fogey captain's Avatar
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    Where I live we have a high Hispanic population. It was determined by our state legislatures that to be fair in voting we have to have the ballots in both languages. Each county is responsible for the cost. I agree it makes no sense. I have asked how many ballots are received in spanish to count and so far the number is very small or none are cast.
    Most everything in the city I live in is in both languages. Even the school system has to provide interperters.
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  8. #28
    Anachronism before Noon Cat Bowling Champion Anemic Dog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dinahann
    Voter apathy is such a dangerous thing. I get frustrated when people say that their vote doesn't count. It most certainly does, but only if you make the effort to VOTE !
    I will say that except in local issues, I feel my vote doesn't count. I just despise the two-party system, which I think ensures that people who have never been elected (Karl Rove, Terry McAuliffe) decide agendae which they have no business deciding.

    I still vote, however. The system sucks and I work to change it, but it's the only system we have.
    Passing over to the Dark Side

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