FUNKADELIC FRIDAYS: JIM CROW STILL LIVES

elderly woman voting

Many people speak of the problems that they have trying to participate in the democratic process in this country.  If you don’t understand what I am talking about, I mean the vote.  It is not a simple process.  Sure we are told that all we have to do is fill out a form and submit it but does that form EVER make it to the person responsible for making your opportunity to vote happen?  These are the entries of my tedious experience.  I have been a registered voter since 1984.  It was the first ADULT thing I did upon exiting high school.  Maybe you can relate.  Just don’t give up.

November 5, 2015

Facebook entry and a copy  sent to the voter registration facebook page.

There were many things that took place that were never shared with the media. I went to vote on the last day of early voting and almost didn’t get to vote. They had an address that had been incorrect since 2011. For the last five elections I had to fill out the address correction cards . I live in Cloverdale and Butler is my voting site. Before, I was sent to Silk Hope since I use to live on Garrard Avenue. I was told by one of the workers that since I lived in the county, I could not vote. I told her that I had not lived at the address they had since 2011 and voted in five general elections since that time as well as filled out the necessary cards for the address correction. I NEVER RECEIVED AN UPDATED VOTER REGISTRATION CARD. After being made to feel that I had not done what I was suppose to do, I filled out a provisional ballot. Sandra Williams gave me a yellow card and I voted.

 

November 5, 2015

Facebook entry.

On Election Day, my husband experienced voting problems as well as I. The only difference was that he lived on Cottonvale but had not been there since April 2014. The computer stated that he was to vote at Butler but they had the county address of Cottonvale instead of our Cloverdale address. We went to the Voter Registration office and spoke with Ms. Sandra Williams. They pulled up his information on the computer and saw Butler as his polling site. I told them that he had filled out cards. Ms. Williams pulled up his card. I noticed that they were dated 2013. I asked her where the 2014 cards were and she did not know. They pulled up his voting record which showed he had voted in two elections in 2014. Although his card was not there, clearly someone had seen it because why would the polling place change from Progressive to Butler? Mrs. Williams took  his third address correction card he filled out and told us to go back to Butler and he could fill out a provisional ballot. We returned but the explaination for filling out a provisional did not match the reason he was voting on a provisional ballot. It made us feel, again, like WE were at fault and did not do address correction forms in time for the election. I personally feel like our votes did not count. It took me a long time to convince my husband to become a registered voter. He agreed in 2013 to become one. I would hate for him to give up although I am not feeling too optimistic anymore.

November 14, 2015

Facebook post and posted on editorial as well as voter registration page.

I AM SICK OF THE VOTER REGISTRATION OFFICE HERE IN SAVANNAH. I AM BEING “FORMED” TO DEATH. I HAVE COMPLIED EACH TIME I HAVE GONE TO VOTE BY FILLING OUT YET ANOTHER ADDRESS CORRECTION FORM. I HAD TO GO TO THE OFFICE AND TALK WITH SANDRA WILLIAMS ABOUT THE PROBLEMS THAT I KEEP RUNNING INTO IN ORDER TO VOTE. SHE GAVE ME ANOTHER FORM TO FILL OUT AND I GAVE IT TO HER IN PERSON. SHE GAVE ME A YELLOW CARD TO VOTE AS IT WAS THE LAST DAY FOR EARLY VOTING. DID MY VOTE COUNT IS MY QUESTION OR WAS I BEING PACIFIED AGAIN WITH ANOTHER FORM? WELL TODAY I RECEIVED IN THE MAIL A VOTER REGISTRATION FORM, VOTER REGISTRATION APPLICATION COVER LETTER, LOCAL DFCS OFFICE LISTINGS, AND A HIPPAA NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES FORM. WHAT ARE THEY DOING? I AM JUST PLUM DISGUSTED!!!!

November 14, 2015

From elections@chathamcounty.org

Thank you for contacting Chatham County Board of Elections. Your message has been received and is being processed.

If you have any further concerns please call (912) 201-4375 Monday through Friday 8am – 5pm.

We look forward to serving you.

November 16, 2015

To elections office.

Will I receive an answer?

November 17, 2015

Facebook  and voter registration page post.

Guess what I received in the mail today, 11/17, 2015? My Chatham County Precinct Card. I registered to vote in 1984. I have not received an official card in years although I’ve voted EVERY election since 1984. This voter card that arrived today was issued 10/30/2015. Mailed 11/13,2015. Received 11/17/2015. The process is AGGRAVATATING but too many people died in order for me to have the right to vote.

November 18, 2015

Voter Registration official.

Hello Mr. Bridges.
 I received a voter registration card but the dates on the card and when I received the card are questionable.  I STILL have to go to the office because the name on the card is STILL incorrect.  This troubles me because you have individuals filling out these cards and yet information is either never changed or partially changed or incorrectly changed.  My address and precinct were changed.  I am not trying to cause a problem but this is so serious.  Too many people just don’t care and don’t bother to vote.  I just want the office or WHOEVER is responsible for collecting the correction cards to actually input the information in a timely manner so that EVERY vote will count.  Thank you.
Ms. Gwyn
November 18, 2015
To Ms. Gwyn
We received the email message you sent on Saturday and will respond. In your message, you indicated you were given a “yellow” card but were concerned whether your vote counted. If you received a yellow card and used it to activate one on the electronic voting machines, then you can be assured that your ballot was recorded and counted.
 Regarding the balance of the message regarding voter registration. Since we are a separate department, we are not aware of the issues you encountered and the reasons you were asked to complete and submit forms, but apparently they were working to insure you were able to vote in the election. If you wish, we will forward your email to that department to address your concerns.
Russell Bridges

November 19, 2015

Ms. Gwyn:

As stated in our earlier response to you, since our office is not in the loop on the processes you went through it is difficult to offer an explanation, but if you speak to Ms. Sandra Williams directly, you should receive the most accurate information available. We did not forward your message to them, but as noted can do so if you wish. From your initial message it was apparent that the desired end result of being able to vote in the election was achieved and that is truly the most important component.

If you want to review your information as it exists in the voter registration system, use this link: http://www.mvp.sos.ga.gov/MVP/mvp.do to look yourself up and confirm your information. Bear in mind, if you made changes to your registration after October 5, 2015, it is possible they may not be reflected at this time; October 5 was the cutoff for registration or changes to registration for the November election and the December runoff.

Thank you,

Russell Bridges

November 19, 2015

To Mr. Bridges

I met AGAIN with Ms. Williams and we almost have the matter resolved.  She agrees that this entire process was unfortunate and sad in that people who are responsible for items reaching the appropriate places are not reaching their destinations in a timely manner, or even at all.  I did receive a voter registration card but the name on the card was a name that I have not used since 2012 when my divorce was finalized.  Since that time numerous correction cards have been filled out.  Nevertheless, Ms. Williams assured me that a CORRECTED voter registration card would be mailed to my address that I have lived in since 2011 with the correct name that I have used since 2012.  I must say, however, that had it not been for the parents that I had and the understanding that my right to vote was afforded me by the sacrifice of so many others, I, like so many others, would have given up.

PERSONAL NOTE TO READER:

I complain about the forms and the tediousness of this process realizing that  at least I am not being threatened with being lynched or having my house burned.  Attempts to control the voting process are still being made none the less.  DON’T GIVE UP!!!

 

 

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