The “V” in Valentine’s Day Stands for “Vote”

Tuesday, January 14, 2019

The “V” in Valentine’s Day stands for “Vote”

I am posting a notification about the upcoming “Writers Resist” event at Beyond Baroque on a TUESDAY as a means of reminding people that the upcoming Election Day, in California, will be on Tuesday, March 3, 2020.

While I support such presentations as “Writers Resist,” the most useful way that writers can act as engaged citizens is to spread the word about California’s Voter Choice Act!

If you live in one of the following counties in California, you will receive a ballot in the mail 28 days before the upcoming primary election: Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Fresno, Los Angeles, Madera, Mariposa, Napa, Nevada, Orange, Sacramento, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Tuolumne. Mark Valentine’s Day on your calendar. Will you may “like” two or three or even four candidates, you can vote for only one: so on Valentine’s Day, tell Elizabeth Warren or Bernie Sanders or Amy Klobuchar that you love “love” their policy platforms by mailing in your ballot.

In other words, California primary voting will be underway less than a month from now!

I have to confess that it will seem odd not to go to a polling place on Election Day itself; I don’t know that I have ever mailed in a ballot. Since elections profoundly affect our public as well as private lives, I have always enjoyed the public aspect of voting. While the Voters Choice Act will, on a technical level, allow me to vote in person, it will no longer necessarily be at a place that I can walk to, another aspect I have always enjoyed about voting.

I do have one key question, though: how do we know that our ballot was delivered?

Did anyone consider an electronic confirmation? This is to say that every mailed ballot should have a scannable code on it, and when the local Registrar receives it, the ballot is scanned and a message is sent (via text message on a phone, or to an e-mail address) in which a voter receives a formal acknowledgement of the receipt of the ballot.

As far as I can tell, one of the needs for making this change has not been widely mentioned: the difficulty of getting workers for the polling stations. At a time of wide-spread employment, finding responsible individuals who can monitor polling stations on a 14 hour shift for relatively low pay is not that easy. The new approach will eliminate the time-consuming task of recruiting workers for an underpaid civic task.

For further information, go to:

For the California Primary, the following dates should be noted:
Last Day to Register to Vote Feb 18, 2020
New Citizen (sworn in after February 17, 2020) Voter Registration Period Feb 18 – Mar 3, 2020
Last Day to Request Vote-By-Mail Ballot Feb 25, 2020
Election Day (7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.) Mar 3, 2020

Sunday, January 19, 2020, 1:00 – 4:00 PM
Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center
681 Venice Boulevard, Venice, CA
Admission free.

David St. John, Jim Natal, and Jan Wesley again will be presenting a contingent of raised literary voices on Sunday, January 19, 2020 from 1:00-4:00 PM. The venue remains Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center in Venice.

This year’s list of participating readers features many of Southern California’s finest upcoming and established poets and writers:
Doug Brown / Shonda Buchanan / Kate Gale / Brian Ingram / Dana Johnson / Casandra Lane / Suzanne Lummis / Sarah Maclay / Doug Manuel / Marsha de la O / Judith Pacht / Alicia Partnoy / Phil Taggart / Amy Uyematsu / David Ulin / Gail Wronsky

The initial Writers Resist reading was held in January, 2017, just prior to the inauguration of our current president. It was presented in conjunction with a national and international day of literary protest and attracted an overflow crowd of concerned citizens. It has been presented in Los Angeles annually in January since then.

Writers Resist is not affiliated with any political party. The focus of Writers Resist events is on the future, and how writers can be a unifying force for the protection of democracy. The only thing we “resist” is that which attacks or seeks to undermine those most basic principles as set forth in the United States Constitution.

In chaotic times like these people look to writers and poets for hope and inspiration. Writers Resist is our way of doing something to provoke positive change. Please join us. And then VOTE!

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