Do you confuse your congressional map with National Geographic photos of creeping fungi? Or your three-year-old’s most creative Etch A Sketch designs? Do you have the same congressperson as your cousin across the state but not your neighbor across the street? Well, there’s a reason for that. And it’s not that our enlightened rulers decided to jazz things up with a Pablo Picasso theme on “District Redrawing Day.”
Umm, no. There’s always a devious little plot behind everything, as explained in a new documentary, Gerrymandering. You see, the social engineers have scrutinized geographic voter trends, and whoever is in charge of redistricting doesn’t want your neighbor’s voting habits to mess up his party’s chances Election Day.
The film offers Gerrymandering 101 for the uninitiated, describing how population shifts and voter reapportionment have been the norm for American politicians. Incumbents often draw the most exaggerated shapes imaginable to keep out a constituency they can’t win over, or divide up a challenger’s district into easily defeated segments.
Phineas at Sister Toldjah sums it up:
Why bother stuffing ballot boxes and getting felons to vote when you can just draw the district boundaries to ensure your guy or gal wins?
I just googled “gerrymandered districts,” and here are a couple examples. Honestly, it makes you wonder, does anybody in Washington ever throw up their hands and say, “This is an embarrassment. We look like self-serving, vote-squeezing fools.” Evidently not, as you can see. The first one is in New York and the second one is in Florida.
Not convinced? This is Barney Frank’s district. Enough said.