Our Quadrannual Madness

Kage Baker was a dedicated voter. She studied the issues, she marked her ballot beforehand, and she didn’t miss an election from when she could first vote as an 18-year old.

She never failed to vote. Not even when Mamma decided Kage had negated her own vote for the mayor of Los Angeles (back in the 1970’s) and became so incensed that Kage fled the house and went to live in the Hollywood Bowl for a week. That’s quite doable, especially if you have a sister who will , like a raven, bring you food and water every day …

When we were living in our car and friends’ living rooms, Kage voted by mail. When we began moving all over California, she re-registered every time we had an address for more than 6 weeks. And in 2008, when I was confined to a hospital bed, she got me an absentee ballot and the notarized statement to let her turn it in for me, and made sure I got to vote for the President in the most historic campaign of our lives.

It’s hard to realize that, though that was only 4 years ago, it was Kage’s last election. It’s been almost 3 years now since she died … and the hooraw’s nest that this election has become would have totally amazed her. Angered her, too; and yes, in a black way, amused her. Let’s face it, the zingers from this campaign have been Homeric. The villains and heroes (no matter which side you assign the labels to) have reached super-human status. The issues really, really matter. She’d have loved voting in this one, and I grieve that she didn’t get the chance.

Especially since, if healthcare reforms had started 4 years earlier than they did, Kage Baker would probably have been alive today …

She’d also have gotten en enormous, blood-thirsty giggle out of the voter suppression attempt on my own front porch this afternoon. Yes indeed, Dear Readers, voter fraud tracked me down and tried to nab me at my own door. Some fellow with an armful of stickers, hangers and unmarked ballots came to the door and informed me that he was a precinct worker tracking down voters who had not yet come in, and the records showed none us in my household had voted. Furthermore,  he would be ever so pleased to let me fill out a ballot right there at my own door, and deliver it to the polling place for me. Just my tax dollars at work!

However … my family makes a big thing of voting. We go all together, we vote together, we get our nifty sticker prizes together. And we had already been to our polling place, where I had actually seen the workers line out our names. And with a name like mine, it’s hard to make a mistake about that. I’d slid the ballot into the box with my own two hands, besides.

When I so informed the yob at the door and demanded his ID, he refused to show it to me, apologized abjectly, and scarpered at a notable speed. So I called the police and reported him, and proceeded to blare my amazing sighting all over Facebook. I must admit, there is a certain thrill out of seeing a mythological beast up close – a vote suppressor! Someone tried to mess with my vote!

The good part of loudly screaming out my news on Facebook was that a somewhat more level-headed friend directed me to the appropriate FBI number whereat to report such shenanigans (Thank you, Athene!) So I called the nice people at the FBI and reported my encounter. I’ll never know if they find him, I suppose, but I have done my duty twice today! I exercised my franchise, and I reported a voting cheat.

And it was really kind of exciting … I ought to be ashamed, but it was like seeing a shark in the water, or a really good UFO. I was nearly suppressed! Right at home!

Ah, what times we live in. Kage wouldn’t be surprised at all.

About Kate

I am Kage Baker's sister. Kage was/is a well-known science fiction writer, who died on January 31, 2010. She told me to keep her work going - I'm doing that. This blog will document the process.
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