Early voting has been underway in many states for the past few days and while millions of people are pouring into their polling places like their lives depended on it (it does) they’re being subjected to ridiculously long lines and hours of waiting just to exercise their rights to vote.
According to The New York Times, Big Apple residents are the latest voters to find out what people in Georgia, Texas and Ohio have been experiencing as many New Yorkers waited for hours to cast their vote when polling places opened up this past Saturday (Oct. 24). With the danger of COVID-19 still stalking humanity and Donald Trump threatening the legitimacy of mail-in ballots and possibly having millions tossed, people felt compelled to vote early and in person to avoid both scenarios and found that thousands of other people had the same idea.
With the election coming amid a pandemic, some voters wanted to avoid the anticipated crush of people at the polls on Election Day, Nov. 3. Others were anxious about voting by mail and wanted to cast their ballot in person, especially after as many as 100,000 voters in Brooklyn received absentee ballots with the wrong names and addresses. Still others sought the convenience of voting on the weekend.
About 190,000 people inundated polling places to take advantage of early voting over the weekend, according to unofficial figures from the city’s Board of Elections.
While we’re excited to see more people turn out and exercise their constitutional right to vote, it’s disheartening to see how difficult it’s become to simply have our voices heard every 4 years (2 if you’re voting for congress and senate seats as you should be). But if there’s one bright spot about this Trump presidency it’s that because of his chaotic 4-year reign of white supremacy terror, people are realizing just how important voting actually is.
In the Bronx, Bryan Washington, 60, showed up early on Saturday to vote at the Andrew Freedman Home, where the line stretched down Grand Concourse and around the corner. Mr. Washington said the reward of casting his vote outweighed the risk of the coronavirus.
“I am one of the ones that truly believes this is one of the most important elections we ever had,” he said.
It is, Mr. Washington. It is.
Get out and vote, people!