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June 26, 2014

Amnesia of Good Citizens

Harry M. Covert

Apparently there is no rest for the weary. Lots of voters in Frederick County either had amnesia or just were too involved in other things to cast ballots this week. Plaudits are due each and every candidate who stood for offices.


Victors on various fronts have lots of hard work to do in the next five months throughout every locale. There will be no “lamentation of swans” in the ensuing days as a poll worker told me, explaining such as “a journey to silence.” If anything, vociferous words are going to be prevalent and prominent.


Sometimes, wonders never cease because many good citizens don’t pay attention to activities going on in the Capital City where their representatives often get off course as to what is important to them in the county.


Noble citizens also get involved in rumors and innuendos and, frankly, untruths. Instead of paying attention to the facts, they are waylaid by unimportant matters. The county pays dreadful prices when those choosing leaders truly don’t pay attention to tangible issues.


Prognosticators always relate what some just want to know, usually from a partisan view, and that’s how they vote.


Days after primary races are not just wake-up calls. These are times to get deadly serious about the big November day when futures for localities are decided. Nonetheless, there should be no winks and nods that everything is going to be okay. As has been suggested on many occasions in past opinion pieces, candidates should be required to “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God.” That will scare lots of wannabes.


Who can bring home all the “bacon” for Frederick County from Annapolis? What’s good for the entire state is worthy quite naturally, but it is more important that the localities cash in. Think about all of the funds going to Baltimore, Baltimore County, Prince George’s County and other “needy” places? Such expenditures for this and that are similar to sending untold funding to Haiti, Honduras or even Mississippi. Frederick’s success in growth, business and education should be top on the list. Tapping the state treasury is not improper.


How to cure the oblivion of eligible voters? This is a tough question to answer. Find an issue that makes everybody irate. Sounds simple, doesn’t it, but it is important and has been the test of innumerable politicians all around the state and country. Nobody wants to be “told” they have to vote, but we are told to have a driver’s license, social security card and credit-debit card. To vote election judges only ask name, date of birth (I didn’t mention my year of birth) and address. It is rather easy to cast ballots, centers are well prepared and only thing necessary is to sign-up.


In order to give everyone a chance, campaigners should not forget those unregistered non-felons in local jails and those in any and all senior citizens facilities, public and private. It is not unusual for those once convicted of felonies in federal and state courts to continue exercising voting rights, even if their rights have not been restored. No one checks at the election boards.


There needs to be a public cataclysm in this voting business. Certainly all candidates, those already in office and those in the chase, would like to see this result so “the journey to silence” will be exciting, stimulating and productive. No stuffing of the ballot boxes as an antidote to idle citizens, please.


Reconsider poll taxes for all? That would bring out the masses.


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