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Letter: Voting should be made as easy as possible in every situation

FILE - In this Jan. 5, 2021, file photo, voters wait in line to cast their ballots in Georgia's Senate runoff election in Atlanta. Democrats plan to move quickly on one of the first bills of the new Congress, which would set federal election standards. The For the People Act would require states to offer early voting, same-day registration and the option of absentee voting for all registered voters. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

I’ve been seeing letters to the editor and columns in several newspapers decrying the basic idea of universal voting, as in, “there are many who should not vote because they are not well educated on the issues.” Mostly, these writers explain, that the limiting ignorance is attributed to the failure of the uneducated to ferret out truth at its base sources, like, I presume, Fox News and the many websites on the net that have found the “real truth” and are free from the subversive influence of the pointy-headed liberals who teach at the super-leftist bastions like Harvard, and Cal-Berkley and the University of Utah, and their fellow travelers – influence peddlers like unions and George Soros and all the other organizations who have joined together to sell out America to the socialists and communists and who hate our country and want to take away our freedom. Honestly, it’s what they believe. When exposed in this, it’s most simple and basic form, it sounds stupid. Well, to thinking people, it is stupid.

Republicans in dozens of states have written and are pushing more than 250 voter restriction laws this session in the various states. All would make it more difficult for people, particularly Black people, to vote, by increasing the difficulty for folks to cast their ballot in upcoming elections. This is counter to the interests of majority rule in a democratic society.

Who has the right to restrict any citizen of his/her most basic of constitutional rights? Who would qualify to make the determination of whether a person can or cannot vote? Does a person’s place of residence cause brilliance or ignorance? Does academic talent run along racial lines? Do we get smarter with age? How about economic status? Does that play a part? Educational level? Shall we limit voting to those who obtain a four-year college degree from an accredited university? Or shall we just admit the basic truth — that by being an American citizen over the age of eighteen does indeed entitle anyone to vote without any restrictions?

The just-passed limits on voting in Georgia are indeed an abomination. Everyone, and I mean every single citizen who has achieved the age requirement is qualified. I can’t disqualify anyone because I think he or she is seriously misled by “fake news” or by the “liberal press,” or, as I would more likely decide, because anyone who can be persuaded that the election was stolen and that Trump is a great leader of the people and cares deeply about the poor and indigent and is not in any way motivated by race or social position in his decision making, should be judged incompetent and therefor disallowed to vote. I believe such people have been seriously misguided and misled by a narcissistic sociopath. I believe he is the most dangerous and least competent person to ever reside in the White House. But I don’t have the right to make such a decision, and I have not campaigned to remove his followers from the voting rolls, though I seriously question their ability to discern truth from horse droppings. No one, for whatever political motivations should ever have the right to restrict another in that way. No one. Ever! Voting should be made as easy as possible in every situation. Only a universal vote determines the real will of the people. All of the people!

J.C. Smith, St. George

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