Monday, March 7, 2011

Youthful Idealists Need Not Apply

[The knight] had gone but a few paces into the wood, when he saw a mare tied to an oak, and tied to another, and stripped from the waist upwards, a youth of about fifteen years of age, from whom the cries came. Nor were they without cause, for a lusty farmer was flogging him with a belt and following up every blow with scoldings and commands, repeating, "Your mouth shut and your eyes open!" while the youth made answer, "I won't do it again, master mine; by God's passion I won't do it again...
Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote 

The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age. 
Twenty-sixth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States
The Washington Post reports that New Hampshire Republicans have prepared legislation limiting the voting rights of college students on the grounds that students are "foolish" and "just vote their feelings," causing them to inevitably vote liberal. This, apparently, must be suppressed for the good of the state and the country. Another Republican cites "youthful idealism" as justification, complaining that young people  are inexplicably "...focused on remaking the world, with themselves in charge, of course, rather than with the mundane humdrum of local government."

Citizen K. sometimes can't resist shooting fish in a barrel and this is one of those times. One might forgiven for thinking that the the phrases "foolish," "just vote their feelings," and "focused on remaking the world, with themselves in charge" might, say, apply to the teabaggers behind all of this foolishness. One might also be forgiven that were the shoe on the other foot, conservatives would be screaming bloody murder and accusing liberals of eviscerating the Constitution.

Which brings me to another point: Once again, Republicanists mount a frontal assault on the document they profess to revere as much as the Bible. The Twenty-sixth Amendment is as clear on the matter of voting age as the Fourteenth is on citizenship birthright. It doesn't say, as New Hampshire Republicans would apparently prefer, that the voting rights of citizens eighteen are older "shall not be abridged unless they are college students." The meaning and intent is quite clear, and it's not "keep your mouth shut and your eyes wide open."

Voter suppression to prevent youthful idealism? God knows that we wouldn't want too much youthful idealism. That will kill a country, every time.


Foxessa said...

While yet, a fetus is considered mature enough to testify at a trial!

Love, C.

Roy said...

They only pay lip service to the Constitution, and they know it. That pesky Constitution spoils all their fun!

Bill said...

Interestingly enough college Republican groups at some New Hampshire schools have been putting their differences aside and joining with their Democrat counterparts to voice disapproval of this measure. It's not terribly surprising really, their rights are being trampled on as well.