ILLUMINATION
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ILLUMINATION

What to wear to a voter intimidation

Wondering what kind of Democrat “costume” would scare a MAGA

As you probably read somewhere, a federal judge has declined to bar a right-wing group “monitoring” outdoor ballot boxes in Arizona’s largest county, Maricopa, saying that to do so could violate the group’s constitutional rights.

And as you’ve probably seen, the members of this group are wearing outfits, including ventilator masks, that make them look like “Hot Zone” virologists or Maaco spray-painters, and they’re carrying guns.

They look about as friendly as a squad of Star Wars storm troopers, but hey, what can a judge do? Open carry is legal in Arizona, and while they may frown upon surgical-style anti-Covid masks in the Grand Canyon State, wearing a gas mask or Leatherface face in public is another cherished freedom.

The group in Maricopa County — and others like it — is voluntarily acting on behalf of former President Donald Trump, who has assured them endlessly that the 2020 election was stolen from him by nefarious Democrats who teamed up with somebody — Venezuelan socialists, the League of Women Voters, the Lonely Whale Foundation, the Power Puff Girls — to manipulate or bewitch electronic voting machines in swing states.

Because I am jealous of these MAGA-nites having all the fun, I’m thinking about doing a little ballot “monitoring” myself in the days leading up to Nov. 8.

The only thing holding me back is that I am not sure what to wear.

It’s tricky. The costume has to be unnerving but also clearly recognizable as Democratic/liberal/progressive. Obviously it can’t be coveralls and a ventilator mask. The election deniers have already claimed that look.

Likewise, the insurrectionist gear popularized on Jan. 6 and, before that, the 2017 “Unite the Right” at rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. No buffalo-horn headdresses, no Stars-and-Bars bandanas, sleeveless Army-surplus jackets or swastika T-shirts. And no sidearms, of course — we Democrats are in favor of more restrictions on who can own guns and where they can parade with them.

So, I ask myself: What look or image would shout “badass Democrat” to Trumpists? A Hillary Clinton suit? A donkey head? A Gavin Newsom wig? I doubt it.

We’re described sometimes as “airy fairy,” but I don’t think a tutu and a wand are going to make many would-be GOP voters retreat to their Rams, Tundras and 4Runners.

We’re sometimes mocked as “tree huggers” for our environmental concerns. Maybe I could dress up like one of the “haunted forest” trees in The Wizard of Oz and wear two holsters filled with apples that I might, just might, throw at voters who a look MAGA-nistic.

Maybe I could clothe myself in Antifa-wear. The problem with that is that I if head out wearing a dark hoodie, sunglasses, and a three-day scruff of beard, I’ll look like a guy shopping for frozen pizza and cat food at Kroger.

I’m struggling here. If you have an attire idea, please share it with me. Time is running out.

We Democrats appear to be at a distinct disadvantage when it comes to this voter intimidation thing. It’s just not our brand.

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Noel Holston

Writer, photographer, horticulturist, international music icon. Lives in the South. Email Noel at nholstonga@gmail.com