I love news stories that really challenge my expectations, and this one certainly did:
A day after the state announced a streamlined process for getting a voting-only ID, long lines at some PennDOT offices forced patrons to wait for hours on Wednesday.
“I’ve been here for two-and-a-half hours,” said (Elsie) Torres, who ultimately waited more than three hours to receive her ID.
Other patrons who spoke with this reporter at the PennDOT center at 8th and Arch streets said that they had to wait between one and four hours to get an ID that will allow them to vote Nov. 6 under a new state law.
Poor people lead difficult lives, and the idea of spending three hours of a single day standing in line to get…an ID? Is pretty amazing. We’ll see how this election goes. But when this happens, people willing to get back up after being knocked down, it’s heartening. This stuff is important.
Although I hate that “this reporter” usage. If you can’t go full first-person and say “me,” just say they spoke to the Associated Press. At least, that is this reporter’s position.
And speaking of poor people, did anyone see Frontline this week? “Dropout Nation” was a stab right in the heart, a look at four high school students in a single high school at high risk for not finishing. It’s a school in Houston where kids are mostly poor and mostly non-white, and most of the teachers we see aren’t. But they are heroes, professionals who give their students everything. The students are truly tragic characters, born two miles from the racetrack when everyone else is assembling on the starting line, failed by every significant adult in their lives. (Some even before they’re born. Who names a girl “Sparkle,” for cryin’ out loud?) You can watch the whole thing at the link. It’s long, but I recommend it.
Eh, if I get through this week it’ll be something of a miracle, but I’m lurching toward the finish line.
So let’s get there, eh?