Some intellectual honesty on voter ID laws
We are not a democracy.
I know that’s hard for most people to understand. I know we’ve been inculcated since the the Wilson Administration that we are a democracy. I know we were taught in American History class that World War I and World War II were about making the world “safe for democracy!” Well, those of us who were paying attention and not staring at Mary Sue Pelton’s training bra. (Okay maybe I was staring, too.)
The United States is a Republic. We use some tools of democracy in our Republic. The best known tool we use is voting. We vote in referendums. We vote on sales tax increases. We vote for local and state officials. And we vote for congressmen, senators and, in a roundabout way, for President.
To prevent fraud in elections, some states have enacted laws that require residents to present photo identification in order to vote. One of these states is the one I live in, Georgia. Some people are challenging the Constitutionality of this law and the laws in other states. Opponents argue that the law is discriminatory against minorities and poor people. It violates their “right to vote”.
What these opponents of the vote ID laws never tell you is striking: There is no right to vote.
“But the Fifteenth Amendment…!”
Nope. It only says you can’t be denied voting because of your race, color, or because you were once a slave. Ditto for women on number 19.
In fact, the Supreme Court has ruled, most famously in Bush v. Gore, that there is no right to vote. At the least, not in a Presidential election.
This doesn’t phase the liberals and race-baiters who demand these voter ID laws be overturned. They argue that such laws disenfranchise minority and poor voters, who may have a hard time getting an ID, who may be intimidated by the government bureaucracy or who may not be able to afford the cost of an ID.
I have two responses to this. First, the State of Georgia at least offers a free photographic identification card for non-drivers who need one. That should be enough, but my second comment is more complex:
The Supreme Court has ruled that the Second Amendment, the right to keep and bear arms, is an individual right, and more recently it ruled that said right is incorporated upon the states (that is, it’s not something the Fed has to follow but the states can ignore).
Yet, when I buy a gun, and in many states if I carry my gun with me, I must have a photographic identification card with me. My state-issued carry permit has my photograph on it. Some states even require a very difficult to acquire permit, for which I must prove cause for need, just to buy or own a gun.
So are these gun laws racist? Do they disenfranchise the poor? After all, liberals argue that requiring ID to vote disenfranchises minorities and the poor from their imaginary rights; isn’t the same true for the actual right to own a gun?
I’m waiting for the Georgia Democratic Party and all the other groups suing Georgia and all the other voter ID states to act. I’m waiting for them to file lawsuits against New York and other states that require hard-to-get permits to own a gun. I’m waiting for liberal policy groups to bring lawsuits against the United States government and its requirement that Americans have a photo ID when we fill out Form 4473 and get our NICS check.
Really, I’m just waiting for some intellectual honesty from the Left on this voter ID issue. I don’t expect to see it.