Fuck You, I’m Voting
Trump has officially said the quiet part loud and noted that he’s not going to agree to fund the Postal Service explicitly because he doesn’t want mail in votes. This during a pandemic that his administration has done a very poor job combatting, in no small part because it made a(n erroneous) political calculation that the pandemic would mostly affect blue states, and Democrats would be blamed. All of this means Trump is actively acknowledging that the only way he can win re-election is through suppression of voting. Which we knew, but now we don’t even have to pretend that’s not what he’s doing. He’s doing it, all right, and, by the way, fuck you for wanting to vote in the first place.
Which, you know. Fuck him, because I haven’t missed an election since my very first one in 1988 — for which I used a mail-in vote, fuck you very much! — and I’m sure as hell not going to miss this one. For the primary election in June, I requested and used a mail-in ballot, and here in Ohio, the Secretary of State will be mailing everyone a mail-in ballot request (why a request and not an actual ballot? Unnnngh, because the Ohio GOP hates actual voting, but at least it’s a reminder one may vote by mail).
However, for the last few national election cycles, I’ve voted early, by driving to my county board of elections office and voting there. I do it so I can have it done early, and because then, no matter what happens to me between when I vote and Election Day, my vote will be counted. Also, in these pandemic times, it’s a responsible social-distancing choice, since I’m usually the only person there to vote when I show up.
The Darke County Board of Elections site informs me that Early Voting begins on October 6 at 8am. If you don’t think I won’t actually get my ass up early this year to be there when the doors open, you don’t know me (well, actually, I’ll probably show up between 10am and noon, but if a cat paws me awake at 5am, which there is a very good chance of, then I’ll be there at 8). I am likely to drag along a family member or two as well. Why? Because fuck you, I’m voting.
Folks, it’s come to this: Today really is the day that everyone should assume the actual Election Day, November 3, 2020, is going to be a clusterfuck of massive proportions, and make their plan to vote early. Likewise, today is the day that everyone should assume voting by mail will be even more of a clusterfuck, and be prepared to compensate for that. Don’t assume otherwise, because, as we have seen, Trump (and the GOP in general, but especially Trump) actually are trying to suppress the vote.
How to prepare?
1. As I have, find out when Early Voting happens in your county and where, put the earliest possible dates and times on your calendar, and then show up physically to vote early. Wear a mask, socially distance, and all of that, but do it.
2. If you take a mail-in ballot: Request it as early as possible and when you get it, fill it out and send it back as quickly as you can. Try to get it in the mail at least two weeks before Election Day, because, remember, Trump and his odious new postmaster general are trying to dismantle the Postal Service as quickly as possible to fuck with mail-in votes. Indeed:
3. Even if you get your ballot by mail, consider turning it in physically at your local Board of Elections, or barring that, at an official dropbox. My current high level of voting paranoia is such that I would go for turning it in to the Board of Elections rather than a dropbox, because if the actual President of the United States is declaring open season on Americans’ right to vote, it’s not too much of a stretch to suspect someone will take that as permission to fuck up dropboxes, because fuck you for voting, that’s why.
In short: Know how to vote early, fucking vote early, and if you must do it by mail, do it especially early (or turn in your ballot by hand, to your local board of elections if possible).
And yes, I absolutely and positively hate feeling this paranoid about the idea that my government is trying to keep my vote from being counted, thank you for asking. But here we are, it’s 2020, the worst President of my lifetime is just blithely gibbering at a microphone about suppressing voting, and there’s no point trying to pretend that it’s not what’s happening, and that the president’s party isn’t complicit with it.
And also: Fuck you, I’m voting. You literally could not stop me this year. I have always voted — always took for granted I could vote — but this year above all I will go out of my way to get it done. You should, too.