Freedom Of Screech

| USA | Right | August 30, 2016

(I am working as an inspector at a polling place during the recent primary. A rule that has been in place as long as I can remember is that you cannot engage in electioneering – i.e. trying to influence others’ votes – within 100 feet of the polling place; this includes partisan apparel as well as verbal electioneering. I have already had to tell several people to take off their buttons, caps, etc. Most grumble but comply.)

Me: “Sir, you need to turn that shirt inside out.”

Man: “What? Why?”

Me: “Because it advertises a candidate, so it’s considered electioneering.”

Man: “You’re suppressing my freedom of speech!”

Me: *using the broken record technique* “No, it’s considered electioneering. There’s a restroom in the building where you can turn it inside out.”

Man: “Okay, but I want you to show me where it’s written I have to do that!”

(He’s on the roster and registered with a party, so none of that is an issue, and he gets his ballot and goes to vote. This gives me time to look through the Poll Worker Guide, where it says exactly what constitutes electioneering, and – surprise, surprise! – it says just what I told him, and then some. When he finishes voting, I show him the passage and, as requested, read it out to him word for word.)

Man: “I want to file a complaint! What’s your name?!”

(I hand him a card with the number of the Elections Office, upon which I write my name, position, the name of the polling place, and its ID number.)

Man: “So you’re telling me I can’t show my support for [Candidate]?”

Me: “You can, but it has to be at least 100 feet away from the polling place. Once you get there, you can turn your shirt back out.”

Man: “And you’re telling me that’s not suppressing my freedom of speech?!”

Me: *again* “No, it’s considered electioneering and it’s not allowed within 100 feet of the polling place.”

Man: *huffily* “Well, I bet if I asked around, people would say it was an issue of freedom of speech!” *storms out*

(I called the elections office and told them what happened, and they told me I was 100% in the right. No idea if he ever called and lodged that complaint, but if he did they probably told him the same thing.)

That’s One Vote For President Paranoia

| Finland | Right | March 30, 2012

(I work as an election official at an early voting polling station in Finland. Early voting slips have to be sent to the voters’ own electoral districts before counting them. This means they are enclosed first into one envelope to ensure anonymity, which is then enclosed into yet another envelope with the address of the voter’s district on it. I am processing a lady voter’s slip.)

Me: “Okay. Now that everything is stamped and signed, we just have to enclose your voting slip into these two envelopes, and then we’ll be good as done.”

Voter: “What?! You can’t talk about the candidates here. This is supposed to be a neutral situation!”

Me: “I beg your pardon?”

Voter: “Don’t you know that it’s illegal to try to influence voters at the polling station? How can you not know that if you work here?”

Me: *confused*

Voter: “This is just unprofessional, you talking about the candidates’ numbers. I demand you discuss this with your coworkers at the end of the day!”

(The voter leaves, looking quite appalled. We did discuss the episode at the end of the day and onto the next day. The only conclusion we can arrive at is that the phrase “two envelopes” is clearly propaganda for candidate number 2!)

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Vote: What Is A “Not Always Right” Customer?

| Not Always Right | Right | January 17, 2012

What do you think is the best definition of a customer who is
“Not Always Right”?

We’ve gathered the most popular entries from a previous Facebook post where we asked you, our awesome readers, what you think the best definition is!

Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

A big Thank You to those who submitted entries on Facebook! Especially Sarah, Dean, Zachary, Jake, Jessica, Katariina and Rebecca – who submitted the entries above!

Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter to find out the results at the end of the week!

Tag, You’re President

| Germany | Right | March 2, 2011

(I am helping out during the election in our region. A middle-aged man approaches the table to get his ballot papers.)

Voter: “Hey, who should I vote for?”

Me: “That’s your decision. Voting is about making your opinion heard.”

Voter: “I don’t know!”

(He waits for some time with his papers in hand before he enters a booth. He doesn’t come out for a few minutes. I am about to kindly ask him to hurry up.)

Voter: “Hey, can someone say ‘stop’, please?”

(The other voters snicker. A young woman looks at me. I shrug.)

Woman: “Stop!”

Voter: “Thanks! Once more, please!”

Woman: “Stop!”

(The man exits the booth and puts his ballot into the ballot box.)

Woman: *amused* “Got a good vote there?”

Voter: “Yes, thank you! This ‘making your opinion heard’ stuff is really hard!” *beams at everyone* “Well, I’ve done my duty now! It feels good!”

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Labouring Over The Decision

| Wollongong, Australia | Right | October 4, 2010

(We are having our federal election. I have just given a voter her ballot papers, and she told me she was familiar with how to vote. However, about 5 minutes later, I see her desperately trying to get her hand into the ballot box.)

Customer: “Someone help me!”

Me: “What is it? Are you okay?”

Customer: “No! I voted for the wrong person! I don’t want that evil man running my country! I just got confused!”

Me: “I’m so sorry, I can’t get into the ballot box until 6pm tonight. Tell me what happened, and I’ll ask my supervisor if there’s anything we can do.”

Customer: “I meant to vote for Julia Gillard but I accidentally put my preference down as Labour!”

Me: “I think you’re okay then. Julia Gillard is the Labour representative.”

Customer: *suddenly looking shifty* “Well duh. Why else would I have voted for Labour?”

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