by Robert Earl Houston
In a perfect world, the Portland Trailblazers would have just won the NBA title, the Nashville Predators would have won the NHL Title, Tiger Woods would have won the U.S. Open, and James Gandolfini would still be with us. Unfortunately, this is not a perfect world.
Today, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) turned back the hands of time and removed decades long enforcement of voting rights in several jurisdictions, and kicked the can into the back yard of the GOP dominated House of Representatives led by John Boehner. The House of Representatives which can’t even agree on what day of the week it is, is now charged with enforcing voting rights – when this past election had a sub-current of voter suppression as a strategy by said GOP.
This rollback affects voting rights in primarily nine states – Alaska, Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and Virginia. And partially the states of California, Florida, South Dakota, Michigan, New York, New Hampshire, and North Carolina, Coincidentally, most of those states are GOP led and can you imagine them having free reign to do as they please? Welcome to 1953 all over again.
The rolls are populated with the names of those who died in order to secure the voting rights of millions of previously disenfranchised Americans. As the country continues to experience a demographic shift, those who once yielded power in this country, who are now in the throes of losing said power, have no interest in justice. Their interest is in self-preservation.
This generation, with it’s lethargic attitude toward voting and civic participation, is about to get a very rude awakening. This is the opening that people like Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and others have been praying to their god for – The God of Ozzie and Harriet – so that the ballot booths return to the good old days when there was no such thing as blacks who could vote, hispanics who could hold office, women who were allowed to vote. Their next tactic is easy – don’t do anything, allow the courts to get tied up for years and years, and work on voter suppression ideas that we haven’t heard of yet.
So, the issue of voter rights has gone completely full circle. Get ready for the rejoicing from the right – and prepare to show up to the polls and be told that “we don’t allow your kind in here” in the halls of democracy.
Today, the Voting Rights Act died . . . and this funeral will be paid by this SCOTUS.
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