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February 28, 2009

Allow ex-felons to vote

Ex-felons should have full citizenship rights restored, including voting, after they are released from incarceration. Having served their time, it would benefit their re-integration into society, which is in society’s interest.

In some cases, they may still have legal and financial debts to repay. But these obligations should not stand in the way of the restoration of full citizenship rights, including voting. Just because someone is a debtor, that’s not cause for the withholding of voting rights.

Studies have shown that ex-felons with voting rights are 50 percent less likely to re-enter the criminal justice system than those without voting rights. We need more participation in democratic processes, including voting. When people have ownership in society, they are less likely to behave in a deviant way.

Ken Gates
Overland Park

Comments

dannysmom

Ken Gates- What is it with you and felons (remenber there is no such thing as an EXfelon. And why this big push now that Obama is president. Is every whiner out there who doesn't like America and our Constitution or current practices going to cry until they get everything changed so that it suits THEIR personal needs? What about the good of our country, innocent victims of these felons- forget there feelings and needs. You know committing a felony is a serious crime and I for one believe in proactive involvment not sweeping up someone's own mess under our rugs. And again WHERE are these studies you speak of- please give facts-let us read the evidenence. For example I can spout off that 50% of felons do repaet to their criminal activity because of drugs and lack of skills- why don't you go out and work with these felons in rehab centers instead of bitching about voting rights- further my study shows that 99% of felons would rather have drugs, money, or a gun rather than the right to vote. Why don't you put your efforts in some issues that actually help RESTORE America to the great country we once were- or are you a CHANGE kinda guy. Spell it out how you want to change our counrty besides laws applied to CONVICTED felons. Better yet be a prison guard and see if your pity still goes out to those poor felons--then go to a Parents of Murdered Children meeting and explain your cause. I ask all of you true Americans ,including me, to stop responding to ignorant,petty, no life of their own letter writers and bloggers-- we give them what they need so badly-attention. Sadly for some, neg. attention is better than no attention--very sad - join a church group,or something positive. Peace be your's.

Smarter Than You

All presidents have a list of pardons, ergo the "send in the clowns" reference. Rich was intended as an ironic (and iconic) example of felonious behavior excused, not the lone occurrence of a pardon. It was definitely the most controversial of the last few administrations. You read way more into it than intended.

Engineer

solomon
Read the list of pardons. Got a great idea. There was Dale C. Critz, Jr. (1989 making a false statement) and Margaret Ann Legget (1981 False Claim). If these people were charged with crimes for doing those things, surely there is grounds to charge Pub 17.

solomon

I don't see where I defended any pardon's STY, I said all Presidents do it. Just for fun, go to wikipedia for a partial list of George W Bush's(only because he is the most recent, not singling him out) pardons, there are people who committed all types of crime from election fraud to mortgage fraud to drug dealing to embezzlement to gun crimes etc.

Engineer,

I get it, the KC political machine was the Democrat boys club.

Engineer

TinaMcG
Sorry, but I would think that without the correlation. Oh well, perhaps the epiphanies will come.

Smarter Than You

Sorry to disappoint, Sol. Actually, on this one issue, not so much. I have no problem with a worthy pardon, but are you really defending the Rich affair? Judy Collins was right ("Isn't it Rich?" It'll be funny once you look up the reference).

Let's play the game by your rules. What was the controversial pardon by "Bush the Lesser" on his way out?

Engineer

solomon
If you know anything of KC in the 30's and you still want an expanation then, as Louie Armstrong said about jazz: "If ya has ta ax, ya never really gets ta know".

TinaMcG

Correlation or no correlation, Eng, it isn't very nice to say we already have too many registered Democrats.

solomon

Engineer,

Please explain the correlation.

Engineer

solomon & TinaMcG
Just seeing whose cage I could rattle. But you have to remember I grew up in the area in the 30's when there was a remarkable correlation.

dannysmom

A presidential pardon exonerates an individual, therefore they are no loger a felon and this article nor our comments pertain to them.

TinaMcG

" In any event, we have enough registered Democrats as it is. "

You caught me in a generous mood today, Engineer. I'll give the opportunity to take that back.

solomon

STY,

Sometimes I feel we are kindred posters and then you go and spoil it when you ignore the fact that every President leaves office with a list of people he pardons on the way out.

dannysmom

First of all I'd like to know where this study took place? As far as I know it's a Federal Law and therefore under no circumstance- including surveys- would a felon ever have been allowed to vote. can you enlighten us more on your "STUDY"????
Also I for one will not be blackmailed by felons that they won't break the law again if we give them their right to vote. Maybe they also won't repeat if we give them your job, $$$, right to own a gun, change the drug laws. They also will stand a 100% chance of being a none repeater if they get the death penalty- and I'd love to see that "study". American's know what they lose when they commit the crime ahead of time- it's their choice BEFORE they do it how important their right to vote is- hopefully that's a predeterminate that saves victims and taxpayers. Felons who really commit to being involved in the political sysytem in America can find other ways to improve society and be active in the process. This is just one more jab at our constitution and the rights to protect ourselves and our country from those whose choices got them where they are.
Maybe they could all migrate to Mexico and I'm sure they'd be allowed to vote there. Here in America we believe in personal accountablity- before you commit crimes not after you get caught. As for serving their time- what a joke- look at the real studies of the pathetic length of time someone serves for murder, rape, felony child abuse- now that's one apalling Study. Felons deserve what the law hands down- that's why we call them FELONS!!!!

Smarter Than You

Isn't "felon" a binary term. Unlike pregnancy, where once you deliver you used to be pregnant, once you're a felon, you always have that conviction.

I guess the exception would be unless you can get Holder and Clinton to pardon you. That's how Marc Rich got away with it.

solomon

Engineer,

Which of your prejudices does your comment here address?

BTW, in my lifetime I've known two people who have gone to prison. One, an attorney who I know is a Republican, the other a non-political a-hole.

Engineer

"Studies have shown that ex-felons with voting rights are 50 percent less likely to re-enter the criminal justice system than those without voting rights". May be so for all I know. But just what other factors were considered in the study? In any event, we have enough registered Democrats as it is.

 
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