Alas, this letter is not about COVID-19.
An election is coming. It will be one of the most important ones of our lifetimes. There are many problems that the next president must address and fix or at least ameliorate.
Because of the virus, there will be new methods used to vote and count. If mail-in voting is used, as has been suggested, there will be a slow vote count. There is already a great deal of maneuvering and attempts to bar certain groups from having their vote counted or even allowed.
This election is promising to get very ugly.
We are a small state. But if cheating occurs, by either side, we must demand, a third party to monitor and certify the results of the election. This may require a counting by people from a neutral nation like New Zealand, Norway or Denmark. This has been done for some other nations.
Do you doubt that our elections have become a corrupt circus? Remember the hanging chads? Gerrymandering? Election laws that discriminate?
During the next general election, we must require secure, complete counts, universal assess by citizens, and timely count totals — not just for Hawaii. For the nation. I do not doubt how our state will vote. But I also do not doubt that many states will do their utmost to keep certain demographic populations from voting. The gerrymandering used in the last election will still be around in many states across the nation. Districts with non-white voters will find that their votes are not being counted because they were gerrymandered out of being counted or disqualified by election rules.
That is wrong and that can not be allowed again. If we see that particular snake, we must cut off its head. We must demand that if illegal gerrymandering is used to disenfranchise voters that the districts not be counted at all and the districts then redrawn for the next election.
Most important, the electoral college must be disenfranchised and removed permanently. It is obsolete and unfair to the citizens who vote contrary to the electors. In fact, disbanding the electoral college should and must be our highest priority for the coming election. Our votes do not count if the elector votes against our wishes. Our votes are negated by the vote of one elector. That is wrong.
Lastly, even though your vote may seem to be barely worth the effort, VOTE!
Elections have been decided by just a few votes … some by just one vote. How would you feel if you sat at home watching TV and a crook or inept jerk got elected because you did not vote?
Our nation simply can not withstand more of the same corruption and hate and bullying. We need a person who is ethical, compassionate, honest, and loves this nation more than himself. That is what these times demand.
Tom Beach is a resident of Waimea.