“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” -George Santayana
On March 7, 1965, hundreds of brave unarmed nonviolent women and men dared to March for African Americans right to vote. The fact is that less than 1% of eligible Blacks voted or registered to vote. People organized a Peaceful Protest March from Selma to the state capitol in Montgomery. However, as those protesters crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge to Montgomery. The police, riding horses ready for violence engaged in excessive use of force, which included brutally beating protesters, sprayed gas at them while journalists and photographers witnessed.
The brutal reaction by the police was not only caught on tape it forced then President Johnson, who was once against civil rights programs as a Senator to call on Congress for equal voting rights for all on March 15. The Voting Act of 1965 was signed into law on August 6; is a landmark piece of national legislation in the United States that outlawed discriminatory voting practices that had been responsible for the widespread disenfranchisement of African Americans in the U.S.
That awful day that started out peacefully quickly descended into a March of death for the right to vote called Bloody Sunday.
Now, 48 years later, a new “Jim Crow” era has emerged with a major step backward in the fight for civil and voting rights. There are conservative states targeting not only African Americans but also Senior citizens, first time voters, early voting, Students, low income, and the undocumented though Republicans call them (illegals). In addition, people without birth certificates were limited or completely denied access to the voting booth because their old state ID failed to meet new voter ID regulations and treated like possible( illegals). It is the 21st Century; we should be on a progressive path toward equality for all not one that will re-engage folks in the act of racism or exclusion leading to suppressing participation in the election process. This year, new stricter voter ID legislation is pending in thirty-one states. This includes, voter ID proposals in thirteen states with proposals to strengthen existing voter ID laws in ten states, and eight states that will amend the new voter ID laws passed in 2011. We need to push back all attempts to suppress the right to Vote.
With so much at stake, it is time to stop sitting on the sidelines. If we are going to succeed, Conservative lawmakers NEED to hear our Voices.
We cannot let the naysayers turn back the clock on Voting Rights or the next generation.
Thank You for Taking Action