Red, White and Blue II

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Dear United States of America,

Remember me? Red from Redsaid in Baltimore, Maryland?

I last wrote to you on the 4th of July 2004, but since I haven't heard back from you yet, I've decided to try again. This time I have a few more questions and I would be ever so grateful if you could answer them for me.

As an alien within your beoooootiful borders, I've never been able to grasp the use of the electoral college. That being said, I also haven't been able to grasp the meaning of life, the concept of mathematics, physics or the need for the clocks to fall back every autumn. I have to respectfully declare that I don't like the fact that the sun still sets at 6:15 pm one day, and the VERY next day it sets at 5:13 pm. It's disturbing and it makes me crave chocolate even more than I usually do, and I think we both agree that craving too much chocolate isn't good for anybody's sanity, and then eating all the chocolate isn't good for that same body's weight or teeth.

Anyway, pardon my digression. Back to the matters at hand: the election and the electoral college.

Now, I'm pretty clear on why the college was founded all those years ago. I know that long ago, in ancient times before Starbucks was invented, some of your Founding Fathers wanted Congress to choose the President, while some of the other Founding Fathers wanted voters to choose. The history books I've read didn't go into the gory details of how they proceeded to fight over this (why do history books always seem to leave out all the fun parts?). I was just informed that the electoral college was the compromise they reached.

I also understand that during that same historic time, before the final frontier was reached and while some of your state borders were therefore very fluid and seemed almost neverending, that having an electoral college kinda made sense. I also realise that more people lived in one state than another (as they still do today) and so your Founding Fathers wanted the people in the most populated states to have the most say in who would lead all of them.

However, as the saying goes: that was then and this is now. So isn't that practice a bit as archaic as beheadings?

In my humble opinion, democracy should be one woman (or man, if he is sufficiently trained), one vote.

You see - and again, I point this out with the greatest R-E-S-P-E-C-T - it doesn't seem fair to me that one state should count more than another, and that if you happen to live in a non swing vote state, then you are largely ignored by the candidates.

You know that I love you with all of my heart (except for those bits of it which are reserved for my family, the boy, South Africa, dogs, coffee and How-to books), but in the eight years that I've had the pleasure of living within your borders, I've never been able to wrap my mind around this bizarre spin on democracy where the popular vote doesn't determine the outcome of the election.

I really hope you can help me out here by explaining it to me?

Anyway, since I know that tomorrow is a big day for you and your people, I won't take up any more of your time. I just want to say that I hope that everyone who is elligible to cast a vote will do so, because many of us who live here don't have a say, and they should do it on our behalf. And, in the event that they're xenophobic, then they should do it for their own futures. And for you.

Respectfully yours,
Redsaid

P.S. Oh, just wondering if that Green Card I asked you about last time got lost in the mail or something, because I haven't received it yet.

8 Comments

Natalie said:

I'll dedicate my vote to you and my other friends who aren't able to have their say in the election. :)

Cherryflava said:

Red...I was just wondering why you are still over there. I mean seriously....why don't you come home?
What is it about the US that makes you want to stay? Let's slip into code.....

Wanneer ek daar was, het daai mense my mal gemaak. Hulle is a bietjie snaaks....nie te reg in die kop.
Toe ek terug SA gekom het, het ek geweet ek is terug tuis. Hoekom wil jy weg van ons wees?

kim said:

i was wondering the same thing about my GC.. and i'll be spending all night in front of the TV sweating for the american people to finally be heard and the president they vote actually be elected this time.. all europe's sweating..

TimT said:

Bugger the election, this is what really concerns me:

I don't like the fact that the sun still sets at 6:15 pm one day, and the VERY next day it sets at 5:13 pm

We Aussies just had to turn our clocks forward an hour. I hate daylight saving I hate it I hate it I hate it!

Stupidity is international; it hath no borders.

Helen said:

There are moments when you write, and I think: Dude...Red is way more clever than I am.

This post is one of them.

I should've sent my absentee ballot to you to fill out, since you floored me. Bravo, Red. Bravo.

Dennis said:

If there wasn't an electoral college the national candidates would only campaign in large cities. Bush, Kerry, Cheney and Edwards has all visited my city of only 103,000 people.
Remeber, the states set up the national government. This way it gives more of America a chance to be heard.

miked said:

A well written letter. I truely hope you get a response :o)

Katy said:

Uumm yeah..Ive been a citizen for a while and I still don't understand all that stuff (and Ive had college classes on politics, ick). I tried to register to vote, but I got a notice after I sent it in saying it was too late (it was SEPTEMBER!!). Horseshit Hawaii!

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about
is a South African girl living in South Africa. That doesn't sound very original, we know, but you might find it remotely interesting when you learn that she has only recently returned to South Africa for the first time after a nine year, one month and two week (non-stop!) stint in the United States where she accidentally became an outlawed alien (also known, especially in immigration circles, as an 'illegal immigrant.' We prefer the term 'outlawed alien' ourselves). During her reversed exile from her homeland, she kept herself occupied by winning this website (but only after shamelessly bribing the judges) and thus being unleashed on the web where she slowly, leisurely became the World's Laziest Blogger; by being a nanny and by attending sci-fi conventions in search of other aliens. In the US, she also made her sailing debut, her international acting debut, tried and failed to learn the piano, and never learned to cook. She is hopelessly addicted to coffee, dogs (especially Labrador Retrievers), how-to books (with a particular fondness for her copy of the Time/Life A - Z Medical Encyclopedia), and she tends to grossly overuse parentheses (we're not kidding) during her attempts at writing, which you may - if you really have masochistic tendencies - subject yourself to by reading the words to the right of this column. If you REALLY and truly STILL want to know more, you can read her C.V. here.
Or you can stalk her send her some love via e-mail at: redsaid[AT]gmail[DOT]com

The Wish List (Because yes, she really does need more how-to books. Honestly!)

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comments
  • Katy : Uumm yeah..Ive been a citizen for a while and I still don't understand all that stuff (and Ive had c... [go]
  • miked : A well written letter. I truely hope you get a response :o)... [go]
  • Dennis : If there wasn't an electoral college the national candidates would only campaign in large cities. Bu... [go]
  • Helen : There are moments when you write, and I think: Dude...Red is way more clever than I am. This post i... [go]
  • TimT : Bugger the election, this is what really concerns me: I don't like the fact that the sun still set... [go]
  • kim : i was wondering the same thing about my GC.. and i'll be spending all night in front of the TV sweat... [go]
  • Cherryflava : Red...I was just wondering why you are still over there. I mean seriously....why don't you come home... [go]
  • Natalie : I'll dedicate my vote to you and my other friends who aren't able to have their say in the election.... [go]
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