Even though both Europe and the USA belong to the Western World and agree on most fundamental democratic principles, they don't see eye-to-eye on everything. According to a recent study, Americans and Europeans often have different perspectives on the way of life - individualism, the role of government, free expression, religion, and morality.

However, Reddit user IBringTheGinger wanted to know how these differences manifest themselves in everyday life. So they created a post, asking Europeans to list the funny problems that are too American for them to understand. It immediately blew up, and, as of this article, has nearly 64K upvotes and 57,5K comments. Scroll down to read some of the most popular first world problems and let us know if you agree with them!

#1

Here is one I can't understand:

Strong violence on tv: No one bats an eye...

Nipple slip: Everybody loses their minds.

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

Also everyone having guns is not a problem, but a girl daring to wear a sleeveless shirt to school when it's a super hot day? Everyone loses their minds

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"Since Reddit is US-centric, I've seen many posts and comments about problems that seemed typically American to me such as being broke because of student debt or postponing going to the doctor because you can't afford it. So I was curious to see if other Europeans like myself ever felt the same way or if they had heard about other 'American problems' that I didn't know about," IBringTheGinger told Bored Panda.

#2

Why doesn't the guy with the most votes just win the election?

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

I know, it's not actually democracy if it doesn't work like this

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The amount of attention their post got really surprised IBringTheGinger. "From what I've seen on r/AskReddit, how many upvotes you get can be extremely random depending on the day and hour you post at and there's nothing you can do about it. I never managed to get past like 300 upvotes before. Almost 60k comments is just crazy."

Even though they knew a lot of the things that were mentioned in the replies such as problems in the healthcare system or excessive swearing-censoring on the TV, they made IBringTheGinger understand the different culture better. "I learned about others and seeing all those issues combined in one place really made me realize I'd never want to chase the American dream myself. Well, not if I wouldn't be hugely compensated for it at least, like a job offer or something. But I doubt that would ever happen anyway."

#3

MM/DD/YYYY.

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troufaki13
Community Member
4 months ago

Yes!! What's up with that??

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#4

Why tipping is considered part of someone's paycheck.

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Perpetual Peripheral Persons
Community Member
4 months ago

So the Customers have to feel Guilt about Poverty, not the Employers

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#5

You Americans eat like you've got free health care.

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Isidien Gudmundsdottir
Community Member
4 months ago

Have you seen the ridiculous large portions we get here? In most European countries that's considered a meal for at least a family of 4 at minimum!

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#6

Why the big amount of flat-earth and antivax people?? Is your education system not doing well??

MiguelRc1 Report

Perpetual Peripheral Persons
Community Member
4 months ago

The Flat Earth Society exists across the globe- ahem, disc... :D

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#7

Kim Kardashian

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chi-wei shen
Community Member
4 months ago

That's the deepest mystery of all.

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#8

21 Drinking age like whaaaat you can vote , go join the army , get married , have children and drive but you're too immature to drink ???!!???!

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Daria B
Community Member
4 months ago

This one I also don't understand. I'm not "a drunk" myself, but it's BECAUSE nobody was strict about it with me.

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#9

The idolization of politicians. They are public servants, similar to a courthouse clerk or a city hall coordinator. They are not rock stars. You don't need to scream their name, buy their merch, fully commit your life to them and believe everything they say. Just... treat them like public servants. Sure, they get power and position but hold them accountable when they abuse it. Don't let corporations and politicians take over, the political system is created by the people, FOR the people. It just... boggles the mind.

Koenigseggalicious Report

European other
Community Member
4 months ago

This is so true, what's that all about ?!

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#10

Not being able to afford to study

Not being able to afford to pay medical bills

Not being able to afford school lunch

Not being able to have schools without security guards

Not being able to drink water straight from the tap

Not being able to walk because you are morbidly obese

toddlers involved in politics

Ghosttalker96 Report

European other
Community Member
4 months ago

Hmmm, a lot to think about there

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#11

Their obsession with celebrities, media and “perfect” looks. How often do I read comments from Americans saying:”Bad European teeth“ while in reality they are totally healthy, just aren’t bleached.

Aleriic Report

Kesam
Community Member
4 months ago

I find the "perfect" look ugly. It looks like plastic.

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#12

People going bankrupt for getting sick. Stupidly expensive "education". Gun control. No repercussion for police brutality.

Why are you paying taxes for?

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

It's crazy that American police can straight up murder people based on their skin colour and there's no repercussions for it. In my country if the police uses a gun even once, even to just injure a suspect, there's massive investigation launched into whether that use of force was called for

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#13

I'm too European to understand how swearing and curse words are such a big deal in movies and songs, but violence and guns are taken with a grain of salt

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Full Name
Community Member
4 months ago

That whole "right to bear arms" thing was written when it took 15 seconds to load one shot of round lead, haha. They didn't envision AR15's. They need to revisit those laws. Badly.

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#14

You have $4.50 in your pocket. The fancy drink is advertised at $3.99. Do you have enough money to buy it? Dunno!

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troufaki13
Community Member
4 months ago

You have to always calculate tax and tip like we're some kind of math geniuses or something!

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#15

The lack of maternity rights and maternity leave.

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Kesam
Community Member
4 months ago

And paternity rights/leave!

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#16

The American Dream. Basically every other developed county is living the ‘American Dream’ while Americans really just think they are, but if you describe the way their country works to someone it sounds like you’re describing a third world country.

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Katrin
Community Member
4 months ago

A third world country with excellent advertisement

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#17

The confusing Imperial measurements system and US customary units.

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Francis
Community Member
4 months ago

YES!

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#18

I don't understand the concept of punching holes in the wall. If you tried that here in Ireland, you'd just break your hand.

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

Same here, are American houses just made out of cardboard or what?

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#19

Double standards. E.g. being prude but having the largest porn industry in the world, praising religion but disregarding Christian values IRL.

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

Many American Christians are so weird, yelling things like "Jesus hates fags" when if they'd read the bible they would know Jesus never said anything about homosexuality

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#20

The fact that Americans refer to a 24h clock as “military time” you mean just regular time?

Also, suing culture. Got injured? Sue! Fell down some stairs? Sue! Fight with neighbour? Sue!

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natie marie
Community Member
4 months ago

This is leaking into UK culture too

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#21

Paying for an ambulance. Seriously, like wtf?

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Rissie
Community Member
4 months ago

We all pay for ambulances. The problem with the American healthcare system is how it's handled and the strange effect of liability beyond anyone's control on the prices

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#22

I will NEVER understand why you guys allow children to not be guaranteed free health care and dental care! Why aren't you up in arms over this, protesting in the streets? They're CHILDREN, why on earth would a rich country not guarantee free health care to all children?! I don't get it.

Enfors Report

Roxy Eastland
Community Member
4 months ago

They won't even protect their children from getting shot dead. We had one school shooting in the UK and even gun owners were so sickened they supported the changes in the law. In the US children getting shot in the face is less horrifying than not being allowed to walk around showing off a gun.

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#23

Having to take out a second mortage because you twisted your ankle in the wrong state.

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Iggy
Community Member
4 months ago

Flying to Europe and paying full private hospital fees would still be cheaper!

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#24

Not having taxes already put into the prices of items at stores

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Magpie
Community Member
4 months ago

In Australia we do have goods and services tax. The item price shown on the shelf / advertising is exactly what you will pay.

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#25

Why Americans are so proud of being American and their obsession with military. Like what did they do other than being born American? What good does military do other than wasting money they could use for e.g. health care.

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Kesam
Community Member
4 months ago

It took me a while to wrap my head around the fact that, if they say that the US is the best country in the world, it's not a joke! THEY ACTUALLY MEAN THAT!!! 😱

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#26

European here, why are all your houses made from cardboard if you have a problem with hurricanes? My country has no natural problems and our houses are made from reinforced cement.

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Francis
Community Member
4 months ago

well, if i recall it right, the idea is, that it is cheaper to rebuild your cardboard house after every event. The materials are a lot cheaper. but those events will happen more often so i think it is just plain stupid now!

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#27

Not using the metric system. Counting in football fields/moon landings instead... I don't get it.

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Isidien Gudmundsdottir
Community Member
4 months ago

You're not the only one but, alas, it's one of those: "it is what it is" things.

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#28

Why do you guys wear shoes in the house??

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troufaki13
Community Member
4 months ago

Or put their feet with the shoes on, on the bed!! I mean, hygiene people!!

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#29

While watching Chelsea vs Manchester United yesterday on NBCSN, during halftime there was a Good Rx commercial where the guy is asking a woman if she would like to fill her prescription, he pulled up the phone and showed her that the same pill can cost from $10 to $90 depending on the area. And that Good Rx can help her fill the prescription with the cheapest prices. Now someone please explain to me how in the ever-loving f**k is it possible for a drug to cost 10x more depending on your location !? Don't they have constant prices like in the rest of the civilized world !?

TheMexicanJuan Report

Isidien Gudmundsdottir
Community Member
4 months ago

First off: What makes you think we have a civilized world here? The Civil war here is still going on in some people's mind albeit not physically. In answer to your question about the Rx pricing: Yes, it does depends where you live because we here live the good life of out of control predatory greed.

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#30

Joining the army for college money and free healthcare. Also how religious they are

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Kurisurin Sutaringu
Community Member
4 months ago

The religion stuff has always bugged me. It annoys me how people dont see freedom from religion as part of our freedom to religion. Not to mention Christianity is everywhere

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#31

Expensive required textbooks that you HAVE to buy to take a university class

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

I did uni in Finland for five years, never had to buy a single textbook, my library provided all the textbooks for free

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#32

How much do I tip? 10%? 15%? Do I tip everywhere? Why isn’t the tax included? Why does the tip vary? Why are the waiters so underpaid?
Also, why do you have to do your tax bill? You could literally go to prison but it’s like a guessing game from what I heard?

XxJiniyasxX Report

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
4 months ago

In the Netherlands we do our annual taxes in an online app where most of the data is already entered. All you need to do is check, enter your deductibles and hit "Send" and you're done. But that isn't possible in the US because some greedy software companies managed to block the IRS from setting up a similar system as a free service.

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#33

Being scared of the police.

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Francis
Community Member
4 months ago

this one is sad..

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#34

How strongly Americans feel about the flag. I saw a photographer get torn to pieces online because someone was standing on the tiniest bit of the flag and people went fuc**ng ape s*it. In the UK most people probably couldn’t spot if the Union Flag was round the wrong way.

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Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

Also children having to pledge allegiance to the flag in school sounds like some North Korea shit to me. The only time in my country we give a shit about the flag in school is independence day and even then no one is forced to pledge allegiance to it or sing to it

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#35

Nipples, or in general the hyper-sexualization of nudity.

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Kesam
Community Member
4 months ago

I love going to my local sauna. Everyone is naked. Boys and girls. You might see your boss or teacher naked. It's just completely normal, and I love it. But for my American friends, when I tell them, the first thing they ask is if people have sex orgies there or how I avoid getting a boner. 😖

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#36

Don't know if it's already mentioned but your delivery drivers just leaving packages outside your front door. I can't wrap my mind around this, how did this ever came acceptable?

Here you sign for deliveries. If you're not there they'll leave a note when they'll come again. If still not delivered you can pick it up yourself. Also if you didn't sign for delivery it's marked as not delivered.

td888 Report

ADHORTATOR
Community Member
4 months ago

This is not an american problem, it happens as well in Europe..Trust me, I am working in the logistics business for over 30 years :-)

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#37

Student debt. I pay €20/Semester tuition in Austria.

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Ole Peder Amrud Hagen
Community Member
4 months ago

We do have student loans in Norway, too, but that's to pay for food and rent. The interest rates are low, however, and I've never heard of anyone not being able to pay it back.

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#38

Many people do not vote because they cannot get time off work to do so.

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Anne
Community Member
4 months ago

We have voting leave! (not so useful anymore, but used to be voting was 8-6 so if you worked, you couldn't make it, so you get to come late/leave early so you can vote - now voting is 6-22 most places so no need anymore)

Bron
Community Member
4 months ago

In Australia, we have a couple of weeks to vote.

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Daria B
Community Member
4 months ago

In Croatia, elections are held on a Sunday because of that. But in Korea it's even better - it's an actual holiday, marked red in the calendar and all. So, regardless of your right to vote, it's an advantage for everyone.

NMN
Community Member
4 months ago

Same in Brazil, it's a Sunday, it's a holiday and its mandatory actually. Oh, and electronic (since the 90s) with a whole branch of the Judiciary to assure security and integrity for the voting system.

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CbusResident
Community Member
4 months ago

American Attorney here: Many US states now have early voting (where you can vote at the local elections office that's open for many hours of the day over the course of several weeks) and/or vote by mail (you fill out and mail in a form, the elections office sends you a ballot weeks before the election, you fill that out and send it in - has to be postmarked by election day). I agree though that every state should have these features and Election Day should also be a holiday.

Tabitha L
Community Member
4 months ago

Was just coming to say this.

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Celtic Pirate Queen
Community Member
4 months ago

Many people don't vote because our system is a fucking joke. Just look at who our "leader" is.

Mick McCrohon
Community Member
4 months ago

Yea, whats with voting on a Tuesday? Saturday voting would sort it out if the aim was to encourage the people to vote.

Monty Glue
Community Member
4 months ago

Oh boy, here we go. Demographics clearly show the USA will be a Hispanic speaking nation by 2100. Republicans resist this change, Democrats for the most part embrace this change. The USA has been enriched by people from all over the world. To stop this change the Republicans try to make voting more difficult, the Democrats want voting to be easier. I was abroad on election day for several years, so I voted by mail. (Absentee ballot). I don't travel now, but I am mailed a ballot by choice for every election. Easy and leaves a paper record. The vote has been eroded by the Citizens United case (corporations are considered people with unlimited donations (bribes)), degrading the voting rights act, purging the voters of the opposing party and Gerrymandering that was ruled legal by the Supreme Court. The November election of 2020 will decide the fate and future of the USA & the world.

Ole Peder Amrud Hagen
Community Member
4 months ago

Uh, how about leaving the polling stations open after most people get off? And maybe on Sundays? Or open up for early voting? In Norway we can vote for around 1 month prior to the actual elections. Also, volunteers go around to care facilities or the homes of people who can't get out to let them vote.

CbusResident
Community Member
4 months ago

(see my comments above) We do have early voting in many US sates like Ohio where I live. But yes, should be everywhere.

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Megan Close
Community Member
4 months ago

We’re working to change this !

Katie and Jared Coates
Community Member
4 months ago

And republicans are trying to do away with early voting and mail in votes, making it even more difficult for the poor and disenfranchised.

Shawna Rachelle
Community Member
4 months ago

Wouldn't matter if they did, the popular vote doesn't win the election, its the electoral vote which wins and we the people, our votes don't count. I've never understood why we vote.

Johnny Q Mattie
Community Member
4 months ago

That’s only for the president. Everything else is directly elected.

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Andrew Yarke
Community Member
4 months ago

And this is why our democracy is going to sh*t.

Christina Uhlir
Community Member
4 months ago

It's just an excuse.

Harriet Borowiak
Community Member
4 months ago

Yes they can. It's the law. They choose not to.

Cesar Grossmann
Community Member
4 months ago

LOL, a bunch of 'murikans got offended on the suggestion to vote on Sundays, and leave all the Sunday for voting. C'mon, folks, I know it hurts, but shooting (downvoting) the messenger won't help you. We are not in the wrong, you are. Voting clearly is not important in 'murika.

Rage Racer
Community Member
4 months ago

what that's a dumb excuse the non politically evolved/non educated use.

Diana Hockley
Community Member
4 months ago

Australian elections - federal, state and local are always held on Saturday, at local primary schools. The polls are open from 8-6 PM and everyone HAS to vote, so employers make time for their employees to race up the road to the school. Oldies in nursing homes - as long as they don't have dementia - have a polling officer visit them, and there is time to do an "absentee" vote as well if you can't get to the polls on Election Day. We have pen and paper voting and the counting is done with a scrutineer for each candidate or Party (senate voting). No sleight of hand can be done!!!

Danielle Renee
Community Member
4 months ago

that shouldn't be an excuse anymore. you can use mail-in ballots but too many people are too lazy to arrange for it.

Origami Chik3n
Community Member
4 months ago

Why does one even need to get off work? I usually vote on my way back to work from lunch break because polling stations are set up all around the town and the whole process is so well organized it rarely takes more than 5 minutes. Them Estonians can even vote without getting out of the bed from what i've heard.

Rani Johnson
Community Member
4 months ago

You can mail on your vote too.

Lisa Greene
Community Member
4 months ago

Some states have changed to laws and are now making the day a holiday!! Finally!

Natalie KS
Community Member
4 months ago

Why do Americans have to register to vote for every election? Declaring one's political affiliation is odd too. What happens if someone is registered with one party but votes for a different party? Is that person 'outed' for party disloyalty? Isn't a person's vote considered private?

Teri Donovan
Community Member
4 months ago

I vote by mail.

Nadine Golubenko
Community Member
4 months ago

We vote online with our ID cards (in Finland and Estonia). Why isn't it possible in US?

Steven Meyer
Community Member
4 months ago

You can vote on weekends as well as during the week, plus the polls are open later to allow people to vote. There is a lot of apathy here and some just don’t want to vote at all(yet they complain the most about the outcome!)

Ashley Wright
Community Member
4 months ago

Baloney.

Ann Gullberg
Community Member
4 months ago

Seriously.. who decided Tuesday was a good day to vote?

Janelle Collard
Community Member
4 months ago

We have vote-by-mail. A god-send to us lazy people!

Danielle Johnson
Community Member
4 months ago

Eh, in America work is legally required to give you time to do that.

Diana Hockley
Community Member
4 months ago (edited)

Australia ALWAYS has ALL elections on Saturday, the polls open at 8 AM and close at 6 PM. The polling is held at the local primary schools which are available in every community. It is the LAW that everyone has to vote and employers HAVE to allow their workers time to vote.

jknbt jknbt
Community Member
4 months ago

you can vote absentee up to two weeks before the election

Johnny Q Mattie
Community Member
4 months ago

The above statement is just ignorant. It’s easy to vote in the US https://www.ncsl.org/research/elections-and-campaigns/early-voting-in-state-elections.aspx#Early%20Voting%20Law%20Table

Kim Conroy
Community Member
4 months ago

in Australia you can vote early-2 weeks before the election. you can do a postal vote. there is no excuse. if you don't vote, you get a fine. voting is a privilege.

Jeff Christensen
Community Member
4 months ago

Strictly speaking you don't really have to vote- you just need to get your name marked off, by post or at a polling place. What you put on your ballot, which may be nothing, is your business.

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Mark Kelly
Community Member
4 months ago

It's the law here in Canada of 2 hours.

Anon Yymi
Community Member
4 months ago

Finland also has voting days on sunday and if you happen to be working, your employer is legally obliged to let you vote.

Lillukka79
Community Member
4 months ago

We also have the possibility to vote early during a few weeks before the day, so everybody can find time.

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John L
Community Member
4 months ago

That is actually changing in Virginia. They are remaking "Confederate Day" into a voting day holiday. Who says young dogs, can't learn old tricks...

Carol Emory
Community Member
4 months ago

Most employers will let people go early on voting day. There are also absentee ballots here if you are unable to make it to the polls. Just fill it out and drop it in the mail or a voters box (usually located at government buildings.)

Don Pe
Community Member
4 months ago

We vote on sunday :D

Isidien Gudmundsdottir
Community Member
4 months ago

We have made up holidays galore! But having a voting day, according to the Sith party (again) would be too much of a Socialism thing but Socialism for the rich and well to do is mandatory for them.

Cesar Grossmann
Community Member
4 months ago

Sunday is for voting. One day is enough.

Carra McClelland
Community Member
4 months ago

Our election days are curing the week, but even if they were on Sunday, there is still a big block of people who could not get the time. We don't have job protections here so taking time off or being late to go vote may cost someone a job.

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Tugg Ster
Community Member
4 months ago

Ummm, no. We can vote on line, through the mail, before work (polls open a 0600) or after (polls close at 7:00 generally). Plus, everyone Who works full time gets a lunch break. It’s the law. And there are pill stations in every voting district. There are several dozen in my small county.

Karen Johnston
Community Member
4 months ago

While this is a problem for some, the polls are open from 6:00 am to 7:00 pm. Most people, if they want, can get here somewhere in that period.

Johnny Q Mattie
Community Member
4 months ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

False. It’s called absentee voting

Full Name
Community Member
4 months ago

Not every state allows it.

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#39

Why people censor swears that are totally obvious

Mr_magggots Report

Kaisu
Community Member
4 months ago

I don't know who censoring is supposed to be for, especially in written the text. It doesn't matter whether I write fuck or f*ck, children aren't stupid, they know what the word actually is

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#40

30 degrees fahrenheit

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troufaki13
Community Member
4 months ago

They say "it's like 70 degrees outside" and I never understand if it's cold or hot!

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