Elliot: A moveable beast

BY BEAU ELLIOT | JULY 30, 2013 5:00 AM

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The great thing about moving in this town is that you meet so many interesting people.

Well, OK, maybe not so much. That’s probably roughly as true as saying Republicans love minority, female, young adult, and gay voters and hope that they turn out in multitudinous droves.

The only great thing about moving in this town is that you don’t have to do it every week.

Although, if we did have to move every week, we could have some truly interesting traffic jams, especially in the winter, given the way this town approaches plowing the streets. (Hint: very, very gingerly and slowly, as if plowing the streets were a religious rite or a social construct, not an actual physical activity.)

The other thing about moving in this town is that you lose so much stuff. Well, OK, maybe that’s just me. (Where are those flannel shirts? Not much of a loss, you point out, given that flannel shirts are around 20 years out of garage-band date. Thanks, you, whoever you are. But what about the nuts and bolts [yes, wing nuts, since you asked] that put the table together. Tables are never 20 years out of garage-band date. Tables don’t know anything about garage-band dates.)

And yes, I know, technically, the wing nuts and bolts don’t put the table together, I put the table together. I know this very well. So just table your technicalities.

It occurs to me that if we had to move every week (oh, joy), pretty soon, none of us would own any stuff. We’d just leave our stuff on the curb for the next renter, drive to the new (in a vague sense of the word) place, pick up the stuff on the curb that the previous tenant had left, and move it in. Talk about it takes a village. Or maybe that’s, it takes a rummage.

The other thing about having to move — did I mention that I had to move? — is that you pay no attention to what Texas Republicans are doing to voting in that state.

And what might that be? you ask. (I don’t know why you keep popping up with all these questions.) Well, basically, Texas seems as if it has decided that only white people should vote, because, you know, those “other” people tend to vote for Democrats.

According to many reports (interestingly enough, or oddly enough, both the Washington Post and The New Yorker had the same headline about the story: “Mess with Texas.”), after the Supreme Court gutted the Voting Rights Act last month, Texas immediately moved to put in place voting rules that the act had blocked.

These included a voter-ID law that a federal court had overruled, saying, it “imposes strict, unforgiving burdens on the poor and racial minorities in Texas.” Yes, I know, Republicans are enamored of voter-ID laws to prevent so-called voter fraud, which almost never occurs in this country. At least not since the days of the original Mayor Richard Daly of Chicago. As many have observed, voter ID is a law in search of a problem.

Texas also, in 2011, redrew the political districts, but a court ruled that minority groups had “provided more evidence of discriminatory intent than we have space, or need, to address here.”

Well, under the Supreme Court ruling, Texas may draw the political lines however it pleases. And it will, given the history of redistricting in Texas, it will.

Attorney General Eric Holder has moved, under a different provision of the Voting Rights Act to stop Texas, but that different provision is not so strong as the one ruled unconstitutional, so who knows?

Maybe my flannel shirts know. Wherever they are.

Meanwhile, where are those damn wing nuts and bolts? (No, not those damn wing nuts.)

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