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Voters Anxious, Depressed, Angry

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This year's election is having a similar effect on Angelenos as the Santa Anas: people are irritable, frustrated, and right on the edge of a good fight or a hysterical breakdown.

An article in yesterday's Los Angeles Times noted that "[a]nxiety, depression, anger — demoralizing feelings that modern Americans have rarely, if ever, associated with choosing a leader — have been reported even from friendly precincts, and yard-sign fights and bumper sticker defacements are just the beginning." The article even mentions a therapist who has had so many clients bring up the election that she considers it a "mental health issue."

LAist has overheard or participated in numerous conversations with disgruntled voters who are fed up with the incivility of the political process. Individuals on both sides of the aisle are exhibiting a level of hostility that is normally only found on LA freeways.

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One woman told of how her neighbor of nearly 20 years refused to speak to her when she brought home Kerry yard signs. A exasperated man in line at Ralphs discussed purchasing his third Bush sign after the first two were ripped to pieces in the middle of the night. There haven't been any reports of local citizens attempting vehicular manslaughter or threatening lovers with screwdrivers, as has been the case in Florida, but it's still pretty rough for a politically semi-ambivalent city like LA.

LAist has to wonder how this will all play out in our fair city at the end of the day, or whenever we learn who our next President will be. Will the fury abate with a Kerry victory, since he seems to be the clear local pick based on bumper stickers? Or will citizens take to the streets in protest if Bush wins? We'll find out soon (or so we hope), but in the meantime, be sure to vote.