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David Briceno: The power of voting

David Briceno
Other Voices

As Election Day inches closer for first-timers and seasoned voters alike, people are required to register in order to vote in this election. In fact, the sooner the registration, the sooner the ballot. It’s mailed to you.

Those who have already been registered have already received their ballots by now. You can vote other ways, too. While mail-ins have come under intense criticism for being corrupt, unreliable and undemocratic the hard evidence points otherwise. Voting by mail is safe.

In fact, there has never been a serious problem with its integrity through any unencumbered widespread voter fraud at all throughout America’s entire history. And anyone can follow simple instructions on how to register to vote.

It’s easy. Just see: http://www.RegistertoVote.ca.gov.

It’s self-explanatory. If any problems, please call 530-265-1298 for help. Keep in mind Oct. 19 is the deadline for registering online to vote for the Nov. 3 election. So do it ASAP. Otherwise, you may have to register in person later.

Also, please note that mainly because of “deadwood” or people who have died or other reasons why citizens can’t, won’t, or don’t vote, deadwood people may be purged from the voter rolls. To prevent it from happening to you, it is suggested to check your voting status online.

So if you want to make sure your vote will absolutely count as a valid one, you need to verify your current eligibility to vote. It’s better safe, than sorry. Check yours at: http://www.voterstatus.sos.ca.gov.

Sure, all this seems like a lot of trouble and very time-consuming, but keep in mind governments that disallow fair elections are usually the most brutal against freedoms. A police state, after all, is a “peaceful” state where people don’t count.

Anyway, there’s more information about voting now before Election Day, too. In fact, it’s encouraged: the earlier, the better. Voting facts can be found much more easier this year than in past ones.

My TV favorite is late night talk show host Stephen Colbert’s short presentation about Golden State voting before Election Day or even on it at http://www.BetterKnowABallot.com/CA. The mailed voting guide that was already sent out to Californians helps a lot in deciding which propositions to vote on as well as who the candidates are, too.

That’s basically the meat and potatoes of any election. There’s a wealth of outside info that can be drawn on in deciding who or what to vote for this 2020 election. Look for opinions of some different sources. They should be easy to find since 2020 is, after all, an election year and that’s an understatement.

Of course, the propositions are too complicated to understand in the thick guide (the confusing language of a bill is actually even too complicated for most state legislators to understand too, so don’t feel bad because, believe me, you’re not stupid) for the average person since they’ve been written by legislative staff, among others with legal expertise. Don’t fret. You don’t have to read the whole thing word-for-word to understand what’s in it.

For first-time younger voters, perhaps the best way and more efficient or less time-consuming way to vote on the props is to find out who is claiming what and why in the media and then take it from there. The pros and cons reveal a lot about an issue.

Do a little digging from different sources — just enough to make an intelligent choice from what little you may know. Don’t just guess. See if it’s good or not for whomever. Weigh it out.

Now’s your chance to be the all-wise judge and a decider of fate. This is the power of the vote granted by the Constitution as a right for citizens. Exercise it. Use it or lose it. And have a good day. Also, hope you win. But then we all win — even if we lose — when we vote, don’t we? Carpe diem.

David Briceno lives in Alta Sierra.


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