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Supreme Court blindsides minorities blocking parts of Voter Rights Act

Roger Caldwell

Roger Caldwell

Supreme Court blindsides minorities blocking parts of Voter Rights Act

By Roger Caldwell

     As an African American, I would unequivocally acknowledge that conditions have improved and changed for Black people since the sixties. There is a Black president and family in the White House, and there are more Black mayors and local/state politicians than ever before in the history of the country. These are irrefutable facts and it appears that America is turning the corner, and Blacks should be content and satisfied.

But in 2009, a new radical political arm of the Republican Party emerged, which felt the country was too liberal and our founding fathers principles were being ignored or abandoned. This new conservative wing called their radical organization the “Tea Party” and they were very successful in the election of 2010, because many of their candidates won offices on local, state, and national levels. The radical arm of the Republican Party was also able to win the majority in the House, and the Tea Party expected to help the Republican Party win the 2012 presidential election.

The Tea Party is comprised of 98 percent of white folks, and the liberal media claimed that their ideology is based on racism, and their goal is to support white supremacy. The liberal media argues that the Tea Party wants to turn back the clock, where white people controlled everything.

On the other hand the Tea Party argues that their organization is open to everyone and there are Black and Hispanics in their party. But in 2011, the Republican Party begin to break away from the Tea Party, because there was a national charge that the Tea Party was practicing voter suppression and voter discrimination against minorities. Attorney General Eric Holder challenged the states where newly created suppression laws were enacted, and they were blocked in the election of 2012.

But Shelby County in Tennessee challenged the legality of the Voters Rights Act, and the Supreme Court struck down the heart of the legislation in June 2013. The Voting Rights Act allowed the federal government to stop discriminatory voting laws from being enacted by the states. For 50 years this act was a deterrent applied to nine southern states and certain counties in other states, which had historically denied the ballot to Blacks and minorities.

Many civil rights advocates, Blacks, and Hispanics believe this was a right wing decision by the Supreme Court that clears the way for states with conservative legislatures to implement whatever voting laws they want. Before the ink was dry on the Supreme Court decision certain southern states were talking about implementing ID cards and new voting laws. This misguided decision gives conservative lawmakers, which is another word for Tea Party members, the legal right to implement discriminatory and voter suppression laws.

Chief Justice Roberts who wrote the majority decision of the court is only looking at numbers, and many white folks believe that discrimination is just about over in America, and it is only practiced in limited pockets and communities. But racist and discrimination is systemic and the system is set up for the majority of minorities to fail. By gutting the Voting Rights Act white folks are ready to become aggressive and keep minorities from gaining positions of power economically and politically.

As conservatives draw a line in the sand, they are determined and ready to fight and spend money to take back political offices and power. Collectively the minorities, progressives, and liberal have the numbers to win, but it will be a hard fought political war. There is power in the vote, but discrimination and cheating must be exposed and not allowed to exist.

 

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    Carma Lynn Henry Westside Gazette Newspaper 545 N.W. 7th Terrace, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33311 Office: (954) 525-1489 Fax: (954) 525-1861

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