Living Life

Jesus, Me, and the Kitchen Table

Voting

on October 30, 2014

Today my husband and I set out to take part in one of the most fundamental duties as a citizen of the USA… we went to vote.  Going to vote for us is not the quick 10 minute thing that it is for most Americans.  But it was still a good experience.  I took the oath so I could read the ballot to Richard (he’s blind) and mark it for him.  Other than some little mix-up with which ballot they gave him…had to do with precincts…it wen smoothly.

Richard and I got seated at the little booths.    A lady was next to us and I could tell she was trying to concentrate.  I felt bad that I was going to have to read out loud to Richard. So I told him I would do mine first and maybe she’d be finished before we got to his.  When I started looking over the ballot, the woman overseeing the voting booths told me they had a machine to help read the ballot if I wanted to use it.  I had forgotten about that!  So we moved to another room and I put my ballot into the machine.  It begins loading the ballot info and then you have to choose “English” or “Spanish.” Once you do that, the screen brings up the first “contest.”  It reads the position and then lists the candidates.  There are buttons on the side to move between candidates and make a selection. You can also see it on the screen and can adjust the print to a quite large size.  If you want to use just the speech, you can turn the screen off for privacy.  I really did not care, so I left the screen on!  And I was wearing headphones, too. When you’re finished it lets you review your selections. If everything looks right, you select the option to mark the ballot, and it marks your choices.  Pretty cool!  All of the buttons on the machine are tactually discernible. So it would be pretty easy for a totally blind user.  I enjoyed having the speech and the large print together.

Richard did not want to fool with trying to use the machine.  He’s not as used to that kind of technology.  But I did put his ballot in and used it to help me read it to him and mark his choices.

As far as getting around in the wheelchair, it was pretty good for the most part.  There was one hallway that was a little snug because there was a water fountain sticking out, and the hall was narrow.  But other than that, no big deal.  Everyone at the polling place was very nice and thanked us for coming to vote.

Happy Voting Everyone!

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