Think About It: Ballot Bailout - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

October 25, 2012

Think About It: Ballot Bailout

I have often lamented Hawaii's woeful voting numbers, the apparent lack of interest- "Ainokea" in local terms. I wondered if people really believed that their vote didn't matter, that our system was going to do what it would do no matter who got into local office. But at least it wasn't as bad as some other systems throughout the country, like Chicago or New Orleans where the joke was "vote early and vote often". Or cities where deceased people voted; or Washington, D.C., where a crack user got re-elected as mayor. Or the deep south, where representatives who slept in Congressional sessions in their 90s got re-elected without a problem.

But maybe I was wrong. After years of witnessing voting machine problems and with the recent primary debacle on the Big Island, I wonder if maybe the apathetic were right, to some degree.  For you see, "vote early and vote often" is now alive and well in Manoa, as duplicate ballots were mailed to over 800 voters in the area right above the University of Hawaii. Those absentee voters are being told to destroy their ballots and wait for new ones, but if you mailed in the old ones already, then destroy the new ones when they arrive. Compounding things, voters received two blue envelopes with ballots, not just one. And the next ballot will be a single ballot, in a white envelope, of course. What's on first? No, who's on first? I don't know- third base!

The error was a machine duplicating error of course, as we live in an age and state where humans apparently are incapable of making mistakes and certainly are not accountable. Just ask UH. To err is no longer human, apparently. But please, do vote- just once, thank you- and let your voice be heard. And in Manoa, just make sure it's just your singular voice and not a duet. Think about it…

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