Thursday, June 27, 2013

Geek Speaking Boozy Votes

Geek Speak: The Power of Booze

Sweet fancy Moses! This is starting to look like a real comic! Sorry for the delay in posts. For this strip I experimented with coloring using a Wacom drawing tablet and Autodesk Sketchbook Pro 6.0. The results are something I'm really, really happy with, but it took a long, long time. It'll get faster as I get more familiar with the process, and make some decisions about how I want to handle it, but this time around I definitely went the long way around. 

I would never advocate the consumption of alcohol as a means to solve your problems. Alcohol just makes you numb to the emotions attached to a problem. It'll still be there when you're no longer buzzed or drunk, and you'll be hungover. Better to deal with the issue, then drink as a celebration of a difficult task done well. With that said I think I'd knock a few back if I ever had an honest-to-goodness conversation with a talking dog in the produce section of Ralph's. 

Random Thoughts

Hipster Charlie Brown says, "I liked the cute little red-haired girl before it was cool."

I Stand With Voters

By now a lot has been said about the Supreme Court (I refuse to use the popular acronym lest it make this pack of hateful, close minded, extreme right wing gas bags sound cool) repealing section four of the 1965 voter registration act. In my own humble way I would like to weigh in with my opinion of the decision reached by a majority of the justices on the Supreme Court. It can be summarized in three words: were they high?

Never mind the rampant racial discrimination that necessitated the creation of a voting rights law in the first place. In the run up to our most recent election a majority of states in the country were desperately trying to pass laws that would have a disproportionate impact on minority voters, the elderly, and the poor. Some states tried to rig the election through gerrymandering of district lines to favor Republican voters, most tried to introduce voter ID laws.

These so-called "Voter ID" laws were proposed with the excuse that it was necessary to reduce voter fraud. In fact the only reason they were being introduced was to limit access to polls for likely democratic voters, minority voters in particular. Minority voters had turned out in record numbers to elect President Obama to his first term, and the GOP wanted to stop that from happening again.

It didn't work. The provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 meant the bulk of the proposed bills didn't pass muster with the justice department. The Republican Party's best weapon against re-electing president Obama failed.

That has changed now. Within hours of Tuesday's decision by the Roberts Court several states (among them Texas, Alabama, and South Carolina) rushed to push through voter ID laws, some of which had previously been rejected by the justice department as discriminatory. The only aim of these laws is disenfranchising (mostly minority) voters.

In her dissent Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, writing on behalf of Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan stated, "The sad irony of today’s decision lies in its utter failure to grasp why the voter registration act has proven effective." She has an admirable turn of phrase, but I don't think this statement goes far enough. The worst part about this decision is the Justices who ruled in favor of repealing section four of the voting rights act don't seem to understand that such a law is still necessary.

In this I feel the Supreme Court has failed in what is possibly it's most sacred duty; the most important responsibility any governing system that even marginally calls itself a democracy must aggressively pursue: to protect the right of its people to vote. Any law that secures the right of voters to go to the polls without undo hardship should be protected, not gutted to pave the way for a political agenda.

As citizens the only power we have is our voice and our vote. I stand with those whose right to vote is in danger of being suppressed.

 I have no doubt that Justices Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia, John Roberts, Anthony Kennedy, and Samuel Alito are looking at their reflections without a shred of shame. You need a measure of humanity to feel ashamed, and they lack the basic equipment. 

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