From time to time we hear of a communist country, like Cuba, holding an election in which all candidates are communist party candidates, all are running unopposed, and all win their election bids. These are not real elections, they are merely the semblance of a democratic process for global consumption. It is a semblance that one of our political parties is quite envious of.
Last week Cincinnati Public School students were bused to the polls and given sample ballots, ballots listing Democrat candidates only.
Three van loads of Hughes High students were taken last week – during school hours – to vote and given sample ballots only for Democratic candidates and then taken for ice cream, a Monday lawsuit alleges. The complaint was made by Thomas Brinkman Jr., a Republican candidate for Hamilton County auditor, and the Coalition Opposed to Additional Spending & Taxes against Cincinnati Public Schools. “They plan to bring four more high schools (to vote) this week,” Christopher Finney, COAST attorney, said Monday after filing the suit. It seeks a temporary restraining order to prevent school officials from participating or helping students participate in partisan politics during school hours or with school property or employees involved. But the school district’s lawyer denies any school connection. “No CPS personnel engaged in the promotion of candidates or any political party,” CPS attorney Mark Stepaniak noted in a written release. CPS spokeswoman Janet Walsh said taking students on school time to vote has been done before. “It has to be scrupulously nonpartisan,” Walsh said.
The suit alleges three van loads of Hughes High students arrived at the Downtown Board of Elections offices at 1 p.m. Wednesday, supervised by a school employee. School lets out at 3:15 p.m.
When they got out of the vans, the students, the suit alleges, also were accompanied by adults who appeared to be campaign workers or supporters for U.S. Rep. Steve Driehaus, D-West Price Hill, the congressman being challenged this fall by Steve Chabot. When the students got out of the vans, the suit alleges they were given sample ballots containing only Democratic candidates.
One has to wonder how this incident could have been anything other than a blatant attempt at the partisan indoctrination of the next crop of young voters.
But what are these students really taking away from this experience? Are they learning that voting is a civic responsibility which must be approached in a responsible and informed manner, or are they learning that their teachers, at least, believe them to be too stupid to cast responsible and informed ballots and should not be given a choice?