On Photo Social Security Cards
Thursday, April 17th, 2014
Last week, Why Tuesday? co-founder and civil rights leader Andrew Young called upon the Social Security Administration to issue optional Social Security cards with photographs. Young argues that such cards could provide government-issued photo ID for at least some of the estimated 11% of Americans who are currently disenfranchised by strict photo ID laws. While attracting support from two former presidents, President Clinton and President Carter, this proposal has also sparked contentious debate nationwide—including within Why Tuesday?’s own leadership.
Let’s be clear: Why Tuesday? opposes restrictive voting laws, including strict photo ID laws. Since its founding, Why Tuesday? has sought to stimulate debate about ways to make voting easier. Adding photos to social security cards is one idea for alleviating burdens on the right to vote—it thus deserves the robust conversation it has inspired. Other reforms are similarly worthy of our immediate attention, including moving Election Day to the weekend, instituting a federal early voting period, creating a universal voter registration system, mandating Election Day registration and updating our country’s electronic voting equipment. Why Tuesday? welcomes a national dialogue about these ideas—and more—as we approach the 2014 elections.