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Flatbush Flashback

My Fellow Americans

A New York City voter fills out her ballot in a “privacy booth.”
If anybody's under the impression that I felt a surge of ecstasy last night when Obama was declared the winner of this presidential election, they'd be sadly mistaken. What I felt was a sense of relief--relief that things will perhaps get worse a little more slowly than if Romney had won. Relief that in the coming years my health insurance might be a little more affordable, a little more accessible, and that maybe I won't have to waste hours of my life arguing with people on the phone about incorrect billing every time I go to a doctor. And relief that at least a slim majority of my fellow Americans weren't so fucking stupid as to believe one word that came out of Romney’s mouth or so fucking racist as to vote for him because he's white.

In other election news, it comes as no surprise that Scott Garrett, the Tea Party congressman who takes money from pornographers, was reelected by a comfortable margin in his New Jersey district. It would be nice to say that Garrett, who has one of the most ultraconservative voting records in congress, is New Jersey’s problem. But Garrett, who is vicious, intelligent, and articulate, promises to do all he can to stop Obama from accomplishing anything in his second term. He belongs to us all.

And finally, I’d like to thank New York State for making voting more complicated, confusing, and stressful. In order to cast my ballot yesterday, I had to wait on four lines: a line to find out which table to get my ballot, a line to get the ballot, a line to use a “privacy booth” to fill out the ballot, and a line to scan the ballot, which, incidentally, provided something less than total secrecy. I really do miss the old machines, where you waited on one line, went into a booth, closed the curtain, and pulled a lever. It felt like you were casting a vote. The new way feels more like you’re taking an SAT, which perhaps partially accounts for the increase in stress.
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