Voter Suppression: No Food or Water

by | Mar 30, 2021 | Politics

In the 19th century, voter suppression of African Americans morphed into a different form: Poll Taxes and literacy tests, the threat of murder hovering like a dark cloud.

No food or water in the voting lines.

When the founding fathers wrote our Constitution, African Americans were deemed to be 2/3 a person. Since they were slaves, they were unable to vote, but the plantation owners could count each 2/3 person on their voting ledger.

No food or water in the voting lines.

Once slaves were emancipated, African Americans could vote, theoretically, and if they attempted to vote, they would probably be hung.

No food or water in the voting lines.

Moving to the 19th century, voter suppression of African Americans morphed into a different form: Poll Taxes and literacy tests, the threat of murder hovering like a dark cloud. And hangings were still a part of the infrastructure of racial terror. There were 4400 hangings between Reconstruction and World War II.

No food or water in the voting lines.

And despite the American Taliban, the KKK’s reign of terror, African Americans continue to march, continued to insist on America’s sacred promise—the right to vote. There were heroes: Robert Moses risked life and limb registering voters in Mississippi; Ida B Wells, John Lewis, Martin Luther King, and Chaney, Goodman and Schwerner. All put their life on the line to fight for the right to vote.

No food or water in the voting lines.

And they marched, crossing Edmond Pettus bridge, where they were shot at, beaten, and tear gassed. But they continued to march, culminating in the passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1964, which has since been gutted.

No food or water in the voting lines.

And then voter suppression morph into a more sinister, Teflon coated sheen in the form of Gerrymandering. Voter Suppressants now have tailored suits, shined shoes, speak in unctuous tongues, and communicate with dog whistles to their base. Like the KKK, the intention is the same: suppress, squash, and disenfranchise the powerless, the voiceless, the discarded, the people of color.

No food or water in the voting lines.

And then the Prison Industrial Complex was hatched, devastating communities of color and guaranteeing low voter turnout—black males were incarcerated at an alarming rate. Can’t vote from a jail cell. Eligible voters in poor communities were systematically disenfranchised.

No food or water in the voting lines.

And then the Russians got involved in voter suppression during the 2016 election: creating faux BLM websites exhorting African Americans to stay home and not vote, that their vote didn’t matter.

No food or water in the voting lines.

And speaking of lines, why are there 8-hour, 11 hour waiting voting lines in communities of color? I am a white guy, living in the suburbs; when voting, I wait on the average of five minutes. And Governor Kemp has the gall, the chutzpah to say his voting bill isn’t racist. How dumb does he think people are?

No food or water in the voting lines.

This isn’t just an Afro-American problem. Both whites and blacks should be outraged by the latest construction of systemic racism. If they can sabotage the right to vote for African Americans, they can do it to anyone. We are all in this together. No one is free until we are all free. Freedom only comes about through taking responsibility. The abomination that has occurred in Georgia with the passage of the suppressive voting law needs to be fought tooth and nail.

The soul of America is at stake.

No food or water in the voting lines.

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