Tuesday, April 11, 2006

I lost my connection with a convicted felon

Yesterday I replaced my expiring South Dakota Driver's License. In renewing my identity in this state, not only did I lose the photo that could have gained me access to a Charles Manson look alike contest, but I also lost a conversation piece. No longer will I hold a license with the name of a convicted felon as governor (William J. Janklow). I lost the name of a convicted felon, but I gained the name of a governor who signed the most draconian state abortion law ever (M. Michael Rounds).

I'm sure Mississippi will give South Dakota a run for their money.

Maybe I lost one conversation piece. I suppose I gained a replacement conversation piece.

The South Dakota Driver's License intrigued me from the day I transferred my residence here. As I registered for my license five years ago, I did a double-take when I heard the request for the six dollar fee. Six dollars! Did that pay for the plastic, the photo, the paper of my form, the labor, my use of the parking lot and the use of the Minnehaha County Administration building? Really? Okay, if you insist. Inflation hit South Dakota since then. I paid eight dollars to carry a new license until April 28th, 2011.

The fun thing about yesterday and today involves participating in democracy. Yesterday I signed two petitions, one for legalizing prescription medical marijuana (destined for failure in South Dakota), the other for repealing a cell phone tax. Today I get to choose a mayoral candidate from a slate of 28 Republicans and 1 Democrat (a little hyperbole on the Republican side, but not much). Party affiliation for a mayoral candidate never seemed to be a concern. The mayoral office relates to infrastructure, not social policy. I don't mind the current offering of a Republican mayor. He has worked well in pushing infrastructure needs toward public awareness and implementation. But I will vote for the Democrat today, for the sake of some diversity on the final ballot.

It is a good day when I can participate in the democratic process.

Off to more Holy Weeking.