Monday, March 23, 2015

16-year-olds and Debra J. Saunders: People who should not be allowed to vote

Letting 16-year-olds vote is a dumb idea.  Reading a Debra J. Saunders column isn't only a dumb idea, it can actually be physically painful.

With the exquisite rarity of a solar eclipse, Debra and I occasionally agree.  We both agree, for example, that 16-year-olds should probably not be voting.  The only thing dumber than a 16-year-old is a 17-year-old.  You don't magically become smart at 18 but you can legally have sex and smoke and anyone who can smoke and have sex at the same time is cool enough to vote in my book.

I'm getting sidetracked.  OK, so let's get to the part where Debra Saunders is even stupider than a 16-year-old:

Failes-Carpenter added: “San Francisco has been losing young people, has been losing families,” She wants teens to be “involved in crafting solutions.” The resolution notes that there were 8,000 fewer school-age children in San Francisco in 2013 than in 2000. She sent me a link to a Politico piece, “Why the voting age should be 17,” by Peter Levine of Tufts University’s College of Citizenship and Public Service. (Note: He didn’t say 16.) One sentence jumped out at me: “If the government affects you, you get to vote.”
Hmmmm, methinks, I work in Francisco. I pay taxes in San Francisco — as well as the pesky 10-cent bag fee. I drive in San Francisco. I use city services — and would like to see more public sanitation. If I am charged with a crime, I will be charged as an adult. But just because I live in the East Bay, I cannot vote in San Francisco. If it is fair for teens to vote because city government affects them, why isn’t it fair for me to vote too?

Right on, Debra!  I went to Redding once, so why don't I get to vote there?  In fact, under Debra's chuckleheaded logic, you should get to vote in literally every city you've ever visited.  Holy shit, New York just got 700 million new voters.  And I am going to have to clear my calendar to study the ballots for every one of the 300 or however many cities I've been to.

Or maybe Deb just means she should be able to vote in places she goes every day?  Or what about once a week?  What if I don't drive or pay that 10-cent bag fee?  No voting?  This is going to get confusing.

(Also, that bag fee is Debra's personal bĂȘte noire.  She mentions it ALL. THE FUCKING. TIME.  I have got a HOT TIP for you, Deb: YOU CAN USE YOUR OWN BAG ANY TIME YOU WANT.  Magic!  No bag fee.  Maybe Debra believes you aren't allowed to use your own bag?  In fact, nobody tell her and we'll put a measure on the ballot to fix it AND SHE WON'T BE ABLE TO VOTE FOR IT HAHAHAHAHAH)

You get my point.  You get to vote where you live.  That's just the system.  Age is a completely separate issue.

In closing, neither 16-year-olds nor Debra J. Saunders should be allowed to vote.


GG said...

Why are you reading the Debra J. Saunders column, TK? Do you read the SFist comments, too? Don't do this to yourself!

TK said...

You have no idea. You bet I read SFist comments. Hell, I read SF GATE comments. There's a very small-time conservative site I visit and LEAVE COMMENTS ON. I am a fucking lunatic.

Rachel said...

Ah, TK. Once again you've improved my morning.
You need a palate cleanser after reading her columns, but I'm not sure what it should be...

Andrea Lepire said...

As the mother of a 16 year old, with whom I get pedicures every few weeks, sometimes with a groupon, but most of the time without, I can say that 16 year olds should not be allowed to vote. 16 year olds see life in only black and white. 16 year olds are full of scary passion. 16 year olds are either Fox News or Mother Jones. No in-between. I love my 16 year old as much as I love my 2 year old and my 7 year old, but I say with confidence, and experience that none of them should be allowed to vote.