V.21 No.45 | 11/8/2012
Why I let lady issues determine my vote
If you refuse to look away while one political party puts personhood for fetuses above personhood for women, this election is relevant to you.
The GOP platform does not make exceptions for abortions in cases of rape or incest, or even some insignificant detail like the life of the mother. They tell us rape resulting in pregnancy is a gift from god. They tell us some girls “rape easy.” I could go on, but I’m sure you know the rest. (If you don’t, the gist of it is really, really misogynist.)
I’m hardly saying President Obama is perfect, or even that another Obama presidency will prevent a gaggle of old white men from talking about vaginas. But a non-vote allows them to continue talking about women as second-class citizens. A non-vote doesn’t combat the notion that we’ll go slut-crazy with unfettered access to birth control. A non-vote won’t keep funding for Planned Parenthood—an organization that provides cancer screenings, treatments of STDs and low-cost contraception as 97 percent of its services. And most of all a non-vote doesn’t tell Republicans that these issues are real, deciding factors for many women of all class, color and circumstances, no matter how much they try to tell us otherwise.
Obama has let a lot of us down on a lot of things to be sure. But he (and the Democrats behind him) continue to do all right when it comes to ensuring women have basic agency over their own bodies. And I haven’t even mentioned the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act or basic civil rights for our LGBTQ community.
Plus, why would you vote for a party that erects a “lady tent” to convince us ladies to like them as much as we all like pink.
Where to watch results roll in
Our three-reporter election team is heading out to various camps around the city. In the meantime, watch preliminary results roll in online.
Politico’s got a few states breaking red or blue on its still mostly gray map.
At the New York Times’ 538 blog, the counting has begun. The forecast is looking Obama-y.
In New Mexico, the Secretary of State’s Office has results online for you. Nothing’s up yet since our polls are still open.
The county clerk’s site is the place to check in about Albuquerque’s minimum wage. Nothing will be there until after 7 p.m.
Tips for avoiding long lines at certain polls
Lines at Jefferson Middle School have shot out the door and down the sidewalk. The Student Union Building voting site on UNM campus has lines an hour or so long. Bernalillo County Clerk Maggie Toulouse Oliver tweets that waits are longer than 30 minutes at Rio Bravo, Siesta Hills, Van Buren, Del Norte, McKinely, Cibola and Hayes. But the wait is less than 15 minutes at Downtown sites, including Washington Middle School and the Clerk’s Annex. Scope a map of polling locations and wait times. You can vote at any one of 69 convenience centers.
If you refuse to vote for a candidate that supports endless war, the 2012 presidential election is irrelevant to you. If you refuse to vote for someone who's in favor of mass incarceration of nonviolent drug offenders, this election is irrelevant to you. If you refuse to vote for someone who has proven time and again that they will put profit before people, banks before families, business before human dignity, this election is irrelevant to you.
Sure, you could vote third party. But that third party candidate is not going to win. Obama is. Having out-raised Romney and being the incumbent, it was good as done before it even began. Not that it matters.
Because whether the next president is donkey or elephant, children will still be slaughtered by American bombs in Yemen and Pakistan. Children will still be cut down by American guns in the streets of Mexico. Palestinian children will continue living under United States-backed apartheid and Saudi children will still wake up every day as subjects of a dictatorship.
And American children? American children, regardless of who wins, will still grow up under the most odious surveillance state in history. They will still inherit a country more likely to throw them in jail than any other country, or government, in the world. Tomorrow, we will still have heavily-armed private contractors in Iraq, troops in Afghanistan (until at least 2024), CIA in Syria and drones in no less than six countries.
No matter how you look at it, both candidates would pursue sociopathic policies and do extreme damage to the planet and the people living on it. The only good thing to be said about this election? It's almost over.
Aural distraction from them ol' Election Day blues
Music has a long and storied history of serving as a medium for political messages. From folk to punk to electro, musicians with politics on the brain have turned up the mic and bared their souls to willing ears and open minds. Listen to 12 presidential and politically themed tracks below. And please don't forget to rock the vote, y'all.
4th Party Roundup
Yeah, yeah, Bronco Bama and Mittens Whatever. Surely some of you are as sick as I am of the non-stop coverage those guys get and are wondering how the OTHER candidates are doing.
No, I don’t mean that Gary Johnson, Jill Stein crap either. I’m talking about the candidates with integrity! The candidates with boots on their heads, with magical flying reindeer, with no mouths whatsoever, and who may or may not actually exist!
Sadly, things aren’t looking so good for our below-the-ballot candidates:
Hello Kitty, by virtue of her London birth (!) is disqualified from seeking office.
Mr. The-Rent-Is-Too-Damn-High seems to have scuppered his presidential campaign and is now, according to his website, "exploring the possibility" of either running for New York mayor, and/or getting "a candidate on the ballot" in all 50 states in 2013. (What are we voting for in 2013?)
Santa Claus sold us out and is endorsing Jill Stein.
And finally, Vermin Supreme openly admits that a vote for him "is a vote completely thrown away." (Although we all get ponies if he wins!)
Screw it, I'm voting for Pogo.
I voted (I wish I didn’t have to)
BALTIMORE—When my husband and I headed to our polling place this morning we took along something extra: Our children. Previously we’ve opted to vote unencumbered by the whirling dervishes of energy that our children are, but this time around we felt a need for them to be a part of what could be an historic vote—and I don’t just mean electing Barry O to a second term.
You see, while I occasionally send in reports to the Alibi about the goings-on in DC I actually live on the Maryland side. And this year’s Maryland ballot features Question 6, a referendum on extending marriage rights to same-sex couples. Maryland passed legislation legalizing same-sex marriage in February; opponents (shocker!) of the bill submitted signatures for the referendum in June. The bill not only allows for same-sex couples to be granted marriage rights, but also includes language guaranteeing religious organizations will not have to gay marry anyone. Question 6 has received support from African-American religious groups; a demographic considered pivotal in securing enough votes to once and finally recognize, legally, the inherent humanity of a group long discriminated against. Maryland has the best chance, so far, of passing such a referendum.
What does this have to do with dragging our five-and-seven-year-old sugar-boogars to a school gymnasium while mommy and daddy perform their civic duty? Did I want to share a warm, fuzzy, feel-good moment as we held hands, touched “yes”, shared a knowing smile and patted ourselves on the back for being open-minded? Or, perhaps, I didn’t want to take the chance that living in a blue county in a blue state wasn’t enough and wanted to model good progressive behavior for them? Not quite.
I took them along so they would have to walk past the people who have been fighting for their rights for too long and who were making that one last appeal to voters, who had smiles on their faces as they asked voters to see them as equals. I wanted them to walk past the people next to them who were asking voters to deny LGBTQ citizens any recognition of full equality under the law.
My husband and I ushered them into the booths with us so they could see us vote for something that should never have been put to a vote. We read the ballot out loud to them and explained why we were voting yes, why this was so important. We did everything we could think of to make sure these tiny people remember the day their parents went to the polls and agreed to legally treat LGBTQ citizens like everybody else.
We want them to remember this moment as past generations have remembered voting to extend rights to women, African-Americans and other disenfranchised groups. We want them to remember this moment because we hope this is the last generation that votes on who is equal and deserving of rights. Rights! We want them to be the generation that finally understands that we don’t have the right to vote on someone’s rights; the first generation to fully understand what equality means; the first generation to fully enjoy equality, equally.
Young Women United / Kirbie Platero
The wait at the polls doesn’t look bad
I was in line by 7:04 am at Jefferson Middle School, and there were at least 50 folks ahead of me. Thank goodness for the bake sale being held in the lobby: The scones held me over until it was my turn. When I left there, were slightly fewer people in line. It was great to see the diversity of voters who turned out early at this neighborhood polling station.
We’ve heard reports of differing waits at the polling locations. You can vote at any of the 69 convenience centers. The county clerk has a color-coded system that will show you what the wait will be like as you head in on your lunch hour. It’s looking pretty good around the city, with green 15-minute waits at most locations.
Or, try the clerk’s new app on your smartphone. Download it at Apple’s App Store or the Android Play Store for free. Just search for “BernCo,” “Bernalillo County” or “My Vote Center.” If you don’t have those services, you can get it right from the bernco.gov home page. There it’s called the Wait Time Feature for My Vote Center.
In our Election Guide, we summed up everything you need to know about voting today.
What’s up with county bond 5?
The Alibi loves bikes. What could be better for our country’s health and the environment than everyone getting out of their cars and powering themselves to work?
It’s part of why we’re not crazy about the Paseo and I-25 interchange revamp. That’s going to suck up so much money. Why not put that cash toward public transit, bike paths or other creative solutions to our vehicle-based problems? When you make the road bigger, it just fills up with more cars.
The city isn’t the only entity pitching funds toward the overhaul, though it’s certainly putting up the most. The county may toss in $5 million, depending on what voters say today.
But here’s the thing: The ballot language on county bond 5 doesn’t say a thing about Paseo. Instead, it says the bond puts cash toward road repair and bike paths. It’s a $10 million bond—and half of it goes to Paseo.
We say vote for it anyway. BernCo residents shouldn’t suffer potholes and dangerous conditions for cyclists because of this shady business. Still, it’d be nice if the ballot language was clearer.
Screw the campaign commercials
Even I’m sick of them. And I love this stuff.
I hear lots of people talking about how they’re all burned out on political candidates and their endless bickering. This is the most expensive election of all time. And where did that money go? Ads. Lots and lots of ads.
But even if you don’t care at all about who’s the next president, senator, county commissioner, whatever, there are a few other issues on the ballot today that are worth your attention.
Do you think Albuquerque’s minimum wage should go up $1? Our election team does, and here’s why.
Do you think Albuquerque should spend $50 million on rebuilding the Paseo and I-25 interchange? We didn’t. Here’s why.
And what about those amendments? Three of the five are about strengthening the Public Regulation Commission. They probably stem from the disaster that was Commissioner Jerome Block Jr. The Alibi’s endorsement crew likes all the amendments, especially the one that pulls the Public Defender’s Office out from under the thumb of the guv. (You may not care about that agency today, but you will if you ever get in trouble with the law and you can’t afford a private attorney.)
Go vote! The polls are open all day!
You’ve got until 7 p.m. to cast your ballot at any of these 69 polling locations. If you got your absentee ballot in the mail, but you haven’t turned it in yet, you can drop it off at the County Clerk’s Office by 7 p.m. That’s in City Hall (1 Civic Plaza) on the sixth floor.
You do not have to bring ID.
If you have any problems at the polls, call these voter protection hotlines:
Here’s what the Alibi thought of the candidates and the issues you’ll see on your ballot today.
V.21 No.44 | 11/1/2012
Next Gen Justice
Young women tackle reproductive equity
Girl Tech participants say the “if, how and when” decisions about having kids should be left to mothers.
Answer Me This
Special Election Edition!
What do you know about voting on Election Day? We’ve got all the answers.
22 Jump Street at UNM Student Union Building, Atrium (ground floor)
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