Gauging interest. Non-profits can display signs that are informative as long as they do not endorse a candidate, it’s perfectly legal. I think the Constitutional Amendment is very important . We don’t have to endorse a side but I think it’s important to make sure everyone possible votes August 2nd. Can we post some kind of sign to remind people to make sure they are registered to vote July 12th and vote August 2nd?
I did host a voter registration event at our previous location.
There were no takers, but it wasn’t promoted at all.
I believe that even the discussion about choosing a position on ballot questions would potentially cause problems between our members and with some of our neighbors.
And, even if it’s technically legal it’s not related to our mission statement.
My $0.02 worth.
I think that people should be aware that there is a constitutional amendment that was put on the primary ballot on Aug. 2 and that you can vote in that election even if you are not voting for primary candidates, but I am not sure the makerspace is really the right venue for that. It treads very close to attempting to influence legislation… which is prohibited expressly in the bylaws:
Activities of the corporation shall not include the issuance or carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation. The corporation shall not, either directly or through the actions of any of its directors or officers, participate in, contribute to, or intervene in (including the publishing or distribution of statements and materials), or otherwise support or assist, any political party, or campaign on behalf or in opposition for public office.
This is not a candidacy for public office, nor was it an ask to endorse the election either way. I just want to make sure that everyone capable of voting does.
This is definitely the worst idea i have ever read on this forum. Politics, even the hint of it, should never be publicized on our campus.
I would support a voter registration drive. I believe that posting anything about a specific topic, no matter how neutral, would invite discord because positions would end up being discussed. And this particular topic is an extremely hot button.
Since we have such a wide spectrum of opinion on political issues, getting our space involved in something that could emphasize those differences would be like touching the third rail. We’re about making.
I changed the title of this post to reflect what my original intentions are.
I’d be happy to help promote if we do a voter registration.
Disappointed by these words but not surprised.
For sure not the worst idea I’ve heard at MakeICT. Hell I have had worse ideas.
Many of us are forgetful. Some of us are nerodivergant. Depression, ADHD, or just super focused on our latest project. Time gets away from us easy. I don’t think a few signs to remind us of elections in general are a bad idea. The problem comes from how those are perceived by people who are politically aligned one way or another. It’s a difficult and thin line to tread. That’s why I shy away from it. It’s a great idea to remind people to vote, but it’s too easy to spark unnecessary controversy.
You are awesome Malissa, and I love your passion about things! Feel free to dm me often to remind me to vote because I’ll forget in like 10min.
I don’t see where it would be an issue to remind people of an election when such a thing as a constitutional ammendment is on the docket. Not taking sides or promoting one or the other is in the safe zone at least from my experiences. Healthy discourse among makers on all subjects regardless of topic should be encouraged, and adults should be able to realize when a discussion crosses the point into “impassioned debate” and be able to agree to disagree and walk away.
@Malissa my response to your post might have been a little harsh. My apologies.
How about sticking something in the newsletter? Presumably most of the membership is eligible to vote.
TL;DR: All proposed changes to policies and laws that we are guided by, be they internal or external, should be raised to all the members so they can engage and have a voice in the processes that we are guided by.
For some context, The League of Women Voters was going to be at Makerfest until the weather warmed up and they had come unprepared.
Prior to accepting their request to attend, I spoke with members of the board to confirm the policy, legal, and makerspace appropriateness. It was resoundingly deemed acceptable because it was a nonpartisan activity that promoted civic engagement, in general.
With regards to this amendment, in particular, The Kansas Secretary of State states that “The constitutional amendment will be on ALL ballots regardless of one’s party or affiliation.” and is, therefore, also a nonpartisan activity that promotes civic engagement.
As an entity in Kansas, we are guided by the Constitution as a whole, it would be our duty to our membership to make sure they had the awareness to engage in the process. Since one doesn’t, and shouldn’t, get the option to choose which parts of the Constitution they follow, to pick and choose which amendments to raise awareness on, based on its subject matter, would be taking a position.
All proposed changes to policies and laws that we are guided by, be they internal or external, should be raised to all the members so they can engage and have a voice in the processes that we are guided by.
Simply mentioning a specific ballot issue can be construed to be a show of support for or against it, even at the same time. A votor registration drive without mention of specific topics avoids that and I also would support that.
… adults should be able to realize when a discussion crosses the point into “impassioned debate” and be able to agree to disagree and walk away.
Internet has joined the chat
I like Malissa’s idea! Voting is the way in which wemakea difference in our community, state and country. We are in a representative republic with occasional opportunities for sheer democracy (the amendment).
I see no reason not to promote engagement in the process with signs. So few voices today speak in favor of our Democracy with neutrality on issues.
However, it may controversial enough to vote on…
Whelp, is Malissa going to take screen printing or letterpress?
Hey, it was lightly promoted. I remember sharing the FB event on my own personal page and receiving only very little engagement
I think that FB event was only made a couple days in advance.
I vaguely remember that the event wasn’t created until only a couple of days before it took place. And that Carly Willis came and made video for the local news on KSN. I don’t remember if it aired.
It was really a spur of the moment idea.
With a little better planning, a more inviting setting and some better promotion more engagement is likely.
I haven’t researched if newer election legislation limits what can be done legally. It may accomplish the same effect to direct people to Kansas Secretary of State | Elections where it’s really easy to register to vote, check if registration is current, apply for an advance ballot (vote by mail), etc.
Check voter registration Kansas Secretary of State | VoterView