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Almost half the people who can register to vote, don’t register. And of those who do register to vote, almost half don’t vote. That leaves the future of our lives in the hands of a small but influential group. How do we take it back? Link voting to having sex, I half humorously argue
By Ray Hanania
They didn’t teach me “New Math” when I went to school in the 1960s, which is probably why I am better at math than many of the younger “whippersnappers” that have come along who think they are smarter than Baby Boomers.
But I do know that most Americans who can vote in elections, don’t vote. The numbers are clear but the percentages seem to vary because some only calculate the total number of people who are registered to vote but don’t include those that don’t register but who can.
Let me explain: Often missing from the tabulations are the total number of Americans who are old enough to register but don’t register, so sometimes, they are not in the equation.
Many election reports will say that in 2012, 66.8 percent of people voted. Well, that’s not accurate in the bigger context. The 66.8 percent represents the number of “registered voters” who didn’t vote.
That’s a terrible reflection on a nation founded on several principles, religious freedom (which apparently doesn’t exist in this country any more) and freedom to vote, which finally was fully realized to include women and Blacks earlier in the last century.
The real number to shame this country is 57.6 percent. That’s the actual percentage of people who can register or who have registered to vote, but didn’t vote, according to the last presidential election is 2012.
What do we do?
Well, for one thing, we can make voting more like Sex. That would have its benefits and its shortfalls.
The benefit? The voting process would be a lot faster and in shorter time.
Let’s be honest. Congress lies to us all the time about raising and not raising taxes. So, if we’re going to get screwed (can I say that word in print?), making voting more like sex makes sense.
I mean “screwed” is the operative word here, isn’t it?
For example, why does a candidate for national office spend $50 million to win a job that only pays $400,000 a year for president and even less for the Congress, only $175,000?
They know that when they get to Washington, their campaign supporter contractors can buy a toilet seat for $10 and sell it to the government for $10,000. (That applies to almost everything bought by our government under every administration.)
Therein lies the problem. The taxpayers get screwed.
Take the unofficial campaign slogan of one of our former presidents: “I want to be president to meet women.” In fact, that is the exact same campaign slogan of his wife, which is fine with me of course, because I don’t discriminate against the LGBT community.
We can tie sex to taxation. It might make a difference. For example, right now we have the highest taxes for fighting crime, and we have the highest crime rate in the country. We have the highest tax for education, and we have the highest rate of school failings.
It makes sense then. The higher the taxes the higher the amount of sex we have, although I am sure when it comes to sex, some people are already high enough. Can you imagine the election promises? We’ll all be screaming for more taxes. And the politicians won’t have to lie about taxes at all. The state’s pension troubles will be resolved, maybe.
And, at least, if no one cares about voting, they’ll care about having sex.
That’s a good thing, I think. Isn’t it?
(Ray Hanania is an award winning former Chicago City Hall reporter and columnist. Reach him at email@example.com.)
This post has already been read 265 times!
Hanania loves to write about American Arabs in politics, and focuses on Arab life in America.
Currently, he writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com. He writes on American politics for the Des Plaines Valley News, Southwest News-Herald, The Regional News newspaper and the Reporter Newspapers. He also writes for the online websites TheArabDailyNews.com and NewsAmericaNetwork.com (Illinois News Network at IllinoisNewsNetwork.com).
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Hanania began in journalism as an activist publishing Chicago’s first English-language American Arab Newspaper “The Middle Eastern Voice” from 1975 through 1977. In 1976, he was hired by the Chicago community newspaper The Southtown Economist (Daily Southtown) and in 1985 was hired by the Chicago Sun-Times and covered Chicago City Hall for both. In 1993, he launched the “The Villager” Newspapers which covered 12 Southwest Chicagoland suburban regions. In 2004, he published “The National Arab American Times” monthly newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East ethnic food stores in 48 American States.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
Hanania’s writings have been published in newspapers around the world. Formerly syndicated by Creators Syndicate, Hanania also has written news, features and Opinion Columns for Al Jazeera English, the Jerusalem Post, YNetNews.com, Arab News, Saudi Gazette, Newsday in New York, the Orlando Sentinel, the Houston Chronicle, The Daily Star, the News of the World, the Daily Yomimuri in Tokyo, Chicago Magazine, the Arlington Heights Daily Herald, and Aramco Magazine. His political columns are published in the Southwest News-Herald and Des Plaines Valley News, Regional News and Palos Reporter newspapers in Chicagoland. Hanania is the President/CEO of Urban Strategies Group media and public affairs consulting which has clients in Illinois, Florida, Michigan and Washington D.C.
Hanania is Palestinian Christian from prominent Bethlehem and Jerusalem families. His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.
His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania
Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com