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Opinion Letters Who exactly are the disenfranchised?

This is in response to Justin Conley editorial of March 10, 2011, entitled “Voter suppression and no jobs.”

Oh Justin. To quote Ronald Reagan, “there you go again.” According to your editorial, Republicans are out to disenfranchise, “students, minorities, the disabled, and those in poverty,” and waste taxpayer money spending $20 million to do it instead of using that money to create jobs. The only job any government creates, whether led by Democrats or Republicans, are more government jobs which must be paid for by taxes. Government does have the ability to encourage job creation in the private sector through its fiscal policy, but it does not “create” jobs. And I just know you did not mean to suggest this state needs even more state employees, did you?

So tell me: how does this veritable army of “students, minorities, the disabled, and those in poverty,” accomplish anything without a photo ID? I was unaware that Western Carolina University and Southwestern Community College stopped issuing student identification cards, complete with a photograph of the student. When did this happen? When did the State of North Carolina stop issuing State ID cards to “minorities?” And who are these minorities? Women? Americans of African descent? Americans of Latin descent? Homosexuals? Is the State picking and choosing between different types of minorities in deciding which minorities to deny a State ID card? These disenfranchised disabled; are they actually receiving disability or just feel themselves disabled?

I ask, because if they have been medically determined to be disabled and receive a disability check, how do they cash that check without a photo ID? It’s actually quite difficult to do much of anything without a photo ID, such as cash a check, buy a plane ticket, purchase cigarettes and/or alcohol, attend an “R” rated movie (if that person has managed to maintain their youthful good looks), or get a document notarized. You didn’t really mean to suggest it should be easier to vote than to buy a pack of smokes did you?

You are a smart young man Justin, I think a lot of you and we all expect big things from you in the future. But engaging in hyperbole like “Jim Crow Two Point-Oh,” which I readily admit is a nice, catchy little rhyme, detracts from anything of substance you may have wished to convey. As I opened with a quote, I will leave you with another. “If you’re not a liberal at 20 you have no heart. If you’re not a conservative at 40 you have no brain.” ~Winston Churchill. Don’t wait until you are 40, Justin.

Rich Cassady — Franklin, N.C.


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