‘I felt so alive’: One man’s inspirational story of advance voting in Johnson County

Jay Senter - July 23, 2018 11:02 am
The pure, unadulterated joy of advance voting is difficult to convey in words.

Life is a long and arduous journey.

But every now and again, if we’re lucky, the veil between the mundane and the sublime is lifted, perhaps for just a fleeting moment, and we get to experience the true essence of being, a oneness among all things.

Today was one of those days for me. Because I cast my ballot in the primary elections.

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I took advantage of Johnson County’s in-person advance voting, WHICH STARTED TODAY AND WILL RUN THROUGH EARLY AUGUST, at the Johnson County Northeast Offices, 6000 Lamar.

Of course, I could have voted in advance at the Johnson County Arts and Heritage Center, 8788 Metcalf; the Johnson County Election Office, 2101 East Kansas City Road; or one of three other advance voting sites. Honestly, the most difficult part of the whole thing was choosing which conveniently located advance voting site I would use — it’s an embarrassment of convenience riches!

I arrived at 10:01 a.m. — precisely one minute after advance voting operations opened (10 a.m., that is. Advance voting is offered from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. On Saturdays, it’s offered from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) — to find a line of about 10 people ahead of me.

“No,” I said to myself. “Dear god above no. This can’t be happening. WHY!?!!?!”

But then the line started moving very quickly. And within about two minutes I was at my voting machine. So the line turned out not to be a big deal!

“Wow,” I said. “I guess the message to anyone who is concerned about long lines at advance voting sites is that it’s really not worth worrying about.”

This is the first election cycle that the Johnson County Election Office is using its new voting machines, which give voters the option of seeing their votes printed on a paper ballot before the ballot is cast. Although I could not read the barcodes on the ballot, I did see a plain text summary of my selections. Which was nice.

I reinserted the card into the machine and clicked on the button to finish casting my ballot.

It’s hard to describe the rush I felt participating in America’s electoral representative democracy. The births of my children are the closest I can come. And I’m not even sure that fully does it justice.

Anyway, if you’re interested in experiencing what it’s like to look into the face of the divine, I’d encourage you to look into advance voting in Johnson County as well!

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