Mailing it in


It’s adorable how people still refer to Nov. 3 as “Election Day.”

We’ve had “early voting” for a couple of years, which began the process of diluting the meaning of Election Day. Now, with the totally unnecessary concept of “mail-in voting,” we’re told that we may not even know the result of the presidential election for days or even weeks after “Election Day.”

The excuse for mail-in voting is COVID-19. We have to let people vote by mail because it’s much too dangerous to stop at the polls on our way home from the liquor store on Nov. 3. We can go to Market Basket two or three times a week, but going to the Galvin Middle School gym once this fall? Fraught with peril.

I must be quite the risk-taker, because I plan on voting in person. I did it for the Sept. 1 Primary and somehow lived to tell the tale.

But don’t take my word for it. No less a figure than the infallible Dr. Fauci says voting in person is fine.

“There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be able to vote in person,” St. Anthony said, much to the horror of those who in the last few weeks have discovered a strange new fondness for the United States Postal Service.

After being the butt of decades worth of jokes, the Post Office overnight has become the most sacrosanct of institutions, about which a discouraging word must never be heard.

There are a couple of hypothetical questions making the rounds to help you decide whether you should trust the mail to deliver your vote.

1. Would you take five crisp $100 bills, put them in a stamped, self-addressed envelope and drop it in a mail box?

I didn’t think so.

2. The Massachusetts Lottery allows prizes up to $50,000 to be claimed by mail. Would you mail in your winning $50,000 scratch ticket to collect your winnings? Or would you hop in the car and drive over to the Lottery’s Woburn Regional Office to claim your prize?

You know the answer and so do I.

Call me a sentimental old civics geek, but my vote is worth more than $500 or even $50,000.

If you’d be a nervous wreck about sending cash or a lottery ticket through the mail, why would you be comfortable voting that way?

It’s not just a lack of faith in the Post Office. Mail-in voting opens the door to all kinds of hanky-panky.

We’ve all heard the claim that there’s never been evidence of widespread voter fraud in the United States. That’s debatable. What’s not debatable is that we’ve never had mail-in voting on a scale like we are seeing now.

Just ask Teresa Burr, the former Town Clerk in Franklin, Mass. She had to resign after 3,000 uncounted mail-in ballots suddenly surfaced two days after the polls closed for the Sept. 1 Primary Election.

Burr blamed the oversight on “the many challenges this election has brought upon myself.”

Believe me, I sympathize. But if it’s that easy for 3,000 mail-in ballots to disappear by accident, imagine what could be done on purpose.

Even in these “challenging times,” voting in person is safe and easy.

There’s no need to mail it in.

[This column originally appeared in the September 24, 2020 Wakefield Daily Item.]

2 Responses to “Mailing it in”

  1. 1 Robin Roberto Horgan

    I don’t go to Market Basket 3 times a week or the liquor store. I will drop my ballot ( if we ever get them) in the box in front of town hall, but if I had to mail it in, I would. I don’t feel the need to be in a crowd of people when we can get a ballot and either drop it off or mail it in. If I was more comfortable, I would prefer in person, but the situation being what it is, I am not concerned about mailing in my ballot. People have been voting by mail since the Civil War and no one had a problem with it until now. People are scared and why? Because an authoritarian is dictating the lawful behavior of the citizens of this country.

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