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KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) KOK Edit: your favorite copyeditor since 1984(SM) Katharine O'Moore Klopf
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Monday, November 03, 2008

Back to the Future

Voting machines we still use in New York StateTomorrow morning, bright and early, I'll be standing in front of a voting machine that will look just like the photo at the left, except instead of being steel gray, it will be colored the aqua of the brochure's background. Though the machines were last manufactured in the 1960s, New York State still uses them! For once, I am glad to be behind the times, because a lot less can go wrong with those ancient machines than with new computerized ones.

Note, however, that women using those machines to vote are not now required to dress like the woman in the photo. Nor are they required to smile before or after doing their patriotic duty.

You can search through the pages here for a photo of your U.S. state's voting appliance. The one from New York is on page 5; yours will likely be on later pages.

Whatever your voting appliance looks like, though, please put it to use tomorrow and vote, if you didn't already participate in early voting. Vote! Vote! Vote!

P.S. I plan to beg my husband not to say or do anything rash when we go to vote. The last time he opened his mouth unwisely—in the Democratic primary on Super Tuesday—he tore the Achilles tendon in his right leg and was in a cast for a few weeks.


I votedUpdated at 11 a.m., 11/4/08: We voted and made it home with Ed uninjured. There were about 80 people on line, but people were moving along fairly quickly. We spent about a half hour there.



4 comments:

Songbird said...

I have that picture in my image file! I remember watching my dad vote with one of those machines. When I first came to Maine they still had similar machines, but now we use optical scan ballots here. You fill in a broken arrow for each candidate or question, and the ballots are scanned. It goes smoothly. I would not like the touch screens.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

How cool it was to watch our parents vote! When I was very little, my mother would take me into the voting booth with her, holding me on her hip as she whispered to me what she was doing with each little lever. I loved getting to help pull the huge red-handled lever to crank the voting-machine curtains open, signaling that the voter was done.

I don't like touch screens even on bank ATMS! If I have to go computerized for anything, I want a keyboard that I can use for inputting my data. Though if I had to use an optical scan ballot, I wouldn't mind the method we used for multiple-choice exams when I was in college in the late '70s and early 1980, where you used lead pencils to color in the circles in front of your choice of answers.

Sarah S-D said...

read of your plan re: champagne and flags at songbird's place and i LOVE it... great stuff.

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf said...

Hi, Sarah. I'm glad you stopped by.

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