Sunday, May 19, 2024

2016 Voting Rights, Still Struggles Ahead.

November 1, 2016 by  
Filed under News, Politics, Weekly Columns

( The post WWII era to the present is revealing. After WWII the United States ruled the world’s economy. Its dominant reign existed mainly because the war decimated European economies.

America was the land of the free and the home of the brave. Jobs were plentiful. The federal government helped citizens to purchase homes. Citizens expressed their sovereignty through voting.  Unfortunately prosperity and democracy signs read for Whites only.

For Black folks “down South,” poll taxes and domestic terrorism were the order of the day that denied Blacks the right to vote and to maintain Jim Crow.

All of these contradictions helped to propel Blacks to take to the streets.  This spurred the 1960s civil rights movement in the South and the Black rights movement in the North.  It held the fire to the feet of Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon.blackvote

The 1965 Voting Rights Act gave the federal government power to knock out the suppressing of Black voting, especially in the South.  It helped break the back of Democratic Party member Jim Crow.

The 2013 Supreme Court released some states from scrutiny. This act emboldened state and local election boards to enact various voting suppressive laws that had crept back into play even before the ruling. They included enacting voter ID laws, restricting early voting, eliminating polling sites, and the like. Today it is mostly the Republicans dominated county and state bodies.  They want to tilt the playing field for Donald Trump and other Republicans.

This account of history suggests elements of truth still exist in Malcolm X’s observation, “The Republicans stick a knife in you 12 inches and the Democrats pull it out three inches.”

Despite the ascendency of a Black man to the lofty heights of being President of the United States, gross disparities remain between Blacks and Whites. Blacks are still last hired and first fired. Affordable housing for many Blacks remains a pipe dream. Quality public education for most Blacks does not exist. The cops continue to show that black lives do not matter.

It looks like Hillary Clinton will win the presidential election. Black folks will play a crucial part in putting her in office. Similar to the civil and Black rights struggles helping to advance the women’s rights movement, the Black vote will help the U.S. elect its first woman president.  Donald Trump’s demagogic, misogynist, and sexist history helps her.

History again tells us that Black gains have been won through our own struggles.  Malcolm’s comments need to be remembered including his openness to working with any color person as long as they want to change the miserable conditions that exist on this earth.

Clinton’s feet need to be held to the fire. Much more is needed from her than relying on the Black vote and promises. Black leadership that comes from the bottom (working class) must expand the Black Lives Matter movement to mean every facet of Black life – for starters.

Columnist; Ken Morgan

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