Why I Don’t Post About Politics

There are a few topics I try to avoid on social media. Religion, Sex and Politics–the holy trifecta of hot button issues. They are intertwined so deeply that you can’t tug on one, without pulling a thread on the other. But recent events in the political arena (arena as in circus) left me scratching my head and wondering–Have we lost our collective minds?

image by veronique debord-lazaro via flickr creative commons

image by veronique debord-lazaro via flickr creative commons

I’m not talking about the Presidential election outcome–I’m caught up in the circular logic of state ballot measures. I live in California, a Blue state where liberal politicians out number the conservatives. In national elections, a conservative vote is lost like a mosquito in a hurricane. But, this strange mix results in some very confusing outcomes in state ballot measures.

Take this last election, for example. California voters received a voter information guide with the text of all the ballot measures. The book was over 75 pages thick–and it read like an IKEA assembly guide. Makes you wonder if they really wanted voters to be informed? Anyway, conspiracy theories aside–among the dozen or so propositions, there were two death penalty propositions, a legalize recreational marjiuana measure, a criminal sentence reduction measure, a tobacco tax, and two propositions to go green and eliminate the single use plastic bags you get from grocery stores.

image by giovanni kessler via flickr creative commons

image by giovanni kessler via flickr creative commons

Being the liberal bastion of progressive politics, it was not a surprise that the eco-warriors struck a blow and won the ban on plastic bags. But the marijuana initiative also passed. The state’s pothead population has no plastic bags in which to carry their weed–the horror.

The prison sentence reduction measure–which entails calling some crimes “non-violent” as a means to reduce the prison population passed. Among the “non-violent” crimes  were rape of an unconscious person, assault with a deadly weapon, human trafficking and domestic violence. WTF?

image by mischelle via flickr creative commons

image by mischelle via flickr creative commons

So, you would think that the pendulum swing to the left would continue with the death penalty, right? That would be a no. Not only was the death penalty upheld, the second ballot proposition passed to streamline the process to make executions occur quicker. We haven’t had an execution in California in nearly 13 years.

I’ve racked my brain to figure out how all these go together. You can have all the weed you want, but you have to stuff it in your pockets, apparently. You’ll get out of prison faster if you don’t commit a capital crime, and if you are sentenced to death, it will happen in an efficient manner. Maybe the thought was to get the state’s criminals to go spark up and be too mellow to kill anyone. Worse ideas have come from the state legislature.

80km4

Gotta love California

 

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2 comments

  1. I’m a Californian and the Ikea catalogue was easier to understand. I don’t know why the legislators can’t get together and make sense of the laws they’re proposing before we’re forced to vote on them. Perhaps we should have a grass roots movement to force legislators to read aloud their proposals to each other in a Hunger Games arena. New reality show.

  2. In Florida the amendments are written in code, so that a no vote means yes and yes means no. I end up wanting to scribble over the whole section. I wonder what that would mean?

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