Margaret Thatcher didn't listen, because to have listened might have diminished her absolute conviction she was right, as well as her determination to change radically the way Britain did business, regardless of the social fall-out. But her inability to listen would be her undoing.
Rising civic participation among young voters should be greeted with the same bipartisan joy with which the 26th Amendment passed. But instead, it's been met with the opposite: a barrage of state-level laws meant to make it harder for young people to vote.
As long as conservatives believe they can win elections by changing the ground rules, the battle over voting rights will continue. And as long as conservatives are weaponizing the Constitution for political purposes, progressives must aggressively tell our own story about the Constitution.
Over the weekend, Mitt Romney, while clearly benefiting from Republican voter purges and Voter ID laws meant to discourage minority and working class voters, accused the Obama Justice Department of somehow trying to disenfranchise military voters -- his biggest lie yet.
In a Republican world, it's mandatory for government to regulate voting even though the Constitution repeatedly deregulates voting, while it's a trespass against patriotism to regulate firearms, even though the Constitution explicitly calls for firearms to be "well regulated."
The fraud that actually exists is not in voter identification but rather in the alleged justification for legislation that requires it. There is no epidemic of voters misrepresenting their identity at the polls.
No one would be foolish enough to argue that the 2012 elections will be a cakewalk for either side. It will be tough, it will be dirty, it will be expensive, and it will be close. So, what is the GOP doing to tilt this relatively level playing field to its advantage?
While the Voting Rights Act and other federal voting laws prohibit discrimination based on race, sex, language, ethnicity, religion and age, there is still no law that affirmatively guarantees citizens the right to vote.
If you're used to instant gratification, homelessness might not be for you. I found that out during our three days on the streets, and it became especially evident later when I walked (literally) through the steps of obtaining a photo ID.