Voting used to involve entering a big, gray metal contraption at your polling place, closing the curtain and casting your votes by moving levers. The whole show concluded when you pulled an oversized lever, thus recording your selections and opening the curtain with a satisfying “thunk.” It was the sound of democracy. When the state flipped to paper ballots that changed. You stand at a table which is somewhat shielded from observation, mark the form, then feed it into something that looks unfortunately like a shredder. Election officials used to give you a folder that was supposed to provide privacy as you slipped the ballot in the black box recording device. This year, in Oak Square at least, you add your ballot in full view of the police officer or election official who is attending the machine. How about putting the secret back in ballot?
November 6, 2012