Monday, July 19, 2010

The Privilege vs. The Right

Commenter Kay at Balloon Juice points out a fundamental difference between liberals and conservatives.

[C]onservatives don’t really believe that voting is a fundamental right. They treat it as a privilege, legally, like driving is.

They can’t say that, it’s not mainstream, so they flip the liberal argument (disenfranchisement) on access, and claim that their votes are being diluted by access, and therefore they are disenfranchised.

[…]

The fact is, the more barriers to voting you put up, the better conservatives do. They can’t expand their vote, so they work hard to limit the opposition’s vote.

Recent events, such as the dismantling of ACORN at the hands of right-wing activists and the nothing-there story about the New Black Panthers, not to mention the Florida 2000 vote recount, lend credence to this argument. Historically, conservatives have made it harder for more people to vote — vide the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that was filibustered by Southern Democrats (who were magically transformed into Republicans as a result of the law) and accusing every election that went against them of being tainted with fraud. Their logic is simple; no reasonable person in their right mind could possibly vote against a Republican, so when a Democrat wins, it has to be fraudulent.

Conservatives will remind you that this is their country; the rest of us only live here.