Ads on a local radio station promoting civic engagement say that New York has among the lowest voter turnouts in the country. (It is not clear whether New York City or the state or both are being referred to.) At least part of the reason for that is the lack of truly contested elections. New York is electing its top state official, the governor. While this is nominally contested, the victor is already clear. Similarly, the state is electing a United States Senator, and that result also seems certain. In my House of Representatives district, the Republicans don’t even have someone on the ballot. Democrats in my district for the state senate and assembly are also unopposed. Only one candidate is listed for the Surrogate’s Court. I can vote for seven other judicial slots. In six of those “races,” the Republicans and Democrats have nominated the same candidate. There are, however, three proposals on the ballot. I don’t know how they will come out. On the other hand, I was not even aware of them until a week ago, and I am not sure that I understand them. Why vote?

 

I am going to vote, but it will be by absentee ballot. I have been supplied an envelope for my ballot. Where the stamps go, the envelope states that sufficient postage must be affixed and continues, “Inquire at the post office as to amount of postage necessary.” Couldn’t one person at the Board of Elections have figured out the necessary postage and stated it on the envelope instead of ordering the thousands, maybe tens of thousands, of us voting absentee to go individually to the post office?

 

I want legislation passed that all networks and local stations showing the same sport must use the same in-game graphics. ESPN has one set of graphics and FOX another and so on. I am tired of trying to decipher each one. I should, for example, only have to learn once how the count on a batter is displayed or how many yards for a first down. While they’re at it, please require that everything is big enough so that I can easily see it.

 

What does it mean that some people want secure borders but don’t care about secure elections?

 

An expression I heard for the first time. The man walking behind me answered his phone and told his caller where he was, which was a New York neighborhood with stately homes. After a pause, he said, “I was looking at a studio apartment.” Pause. “It was nice, but it was a boat cavity, but that’s New York.” Pause. “A boat cavity.” Pause. “It was all wood.”

 

News stories tell me about “early voting.” I am confused. I understand that I can be early for a movie, a dinner party, or a doctor’s appointment. That means I have arrived before the scheduled time, and I will have to wait for the movie, the dinner, or the doctor. But if I show up at the polls and am allowed to vote, how can I be early? I have arrived during the scheduled time for voting.

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