Voter Suppression Tactics for the 1960s 2020s
Yes, the Georgia Republican Party wants to make it harder for African-Americans and Democrats to cast their votes in future elections.
After President Joe Biden, Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) and Sen. Jon Ossoff (D-Ga.), with a lot of help from Stacey Abrams, turned the once reliably red state blue, what did people really expect?
But the new voter suppression tactics proposed by the Republican-led Georgia state legislature is equal parts a desperation attempt for those lawmakers to retain their jobs and a desperation attempt to stop an African-American takeover of a former Confederate state.
The GOP has proposed legislation that tries to limit the voting power of Democrats, especially those from the African-American community.
The Associated Press reported, “The proposals are similar to those pushed by Republicans in other battleground states: adding barriers to mail-in and early voting, major factors in helping Joe Biden win Georgia’s 16 Electoral College votes and Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff take the two Senate seats that gave Democrats control of the chamber.
“But one aspect of their plans, a proposal to eliminate early voting on Sundays, seems specifically targeted at a traditional get-out-the-vote campaign by Black churches, referred to as ‘souls to the polls.’”
However, there seems to be one thing that the GOP has forgotten about the souls of Black folk.
When the Black community finds the determination to share in the American dream and that thing called equality, hell or high water will not stop them from achieving their goals.
Therefore, the Republican Party has gone about the diversity issue totally wrong in the last few years.
Yes, America will continue to become blacker and browner over the coming years.
And yes, minorities often favor the Democratic Party over the Republican Party, which puts the GOP in jeopardy.
But the way the GOP should address the browning of America is not to discriminate against minority communities.
The key to maintaining some semblance of power for the GOP is to embrace the diversity in American and work to get some minorities over to their Party.
However, taking America back to the days before the Voting Rights Act of 1965 with voter suppression tactics that rival literacy tests, grandfather clauses and poll taxes is not the way to endear the Party to the Black community.
Doing so only strengthens the resolve of the Black community and will lead to more brutal defeats for the GOP.
Abrams probably lost the Georgia gubernatorial race to Gov. Mike Kemp because of voter suppression tactics like voter purges and the closing down of voting locations in predominantly Black communities.
However, that only motivated Abrams, the Democratic Party and the African-American community to show up to the polls in droves to defeat many on the Republican ticket two years later in 2020.
Therefore, a much-needed public service announcement to the Republican Party is in order: discrimination and racism does not intimidate Black folks.
Things like oppression, bigotry and voter suppression motivates the Black community and that motivation WILL lead to the Georgia legislature turning blue in the next state election.
In 1955, when Rosa Parks’ refusal to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala. city bus sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the Black community of that city faced immense pressure and threats from their White counterparts.
People lost their jobs for participating in the boycott.
People lost property for participating in the boycott.
And people lost their lives for participating in the boycott.
However, what the Black community, and its White allies, did not lose was the actual boycott.
Despite the dangers that the boycott presented, when the Black community has its mind set on freedom, bigotry hatred and the ignorance of some in the White community will not hinder the mission.
That hatred only adds fuel to the fire once the community has its mindset on burning down the White power structure called America.
The Republican Party has to realize that some of their policies resonate with many in the Black community.
Prison reform enacted by the president before Biden helped the Black community a great deal because the prison system has long been used to re-enslave and disenfranchise the Black community since the days of Reconstruction.
Furthermore, the GOP favors lower taxes, which sometimes benefits middle class, upper middle class and upper class Black communities.
The word sometimes is used because often when a Black person climbs the socioeconomic ladder to financial success, the money they save from GOP tax cuts has to be used to help their less fortunate relatives who see social programs favored by Democrats cut when a Republican is in office.
Additionally, many in the Black community lean heavily on their religious faith.
Therefore, GOP stances that favor pro-life, traditional marriage and other social issues resonate with Black Christians.
However, the Black community has to often choose between a Party that they might not agree with on some social issues versus a Party that wants to overtly discriminate against them and return to the days of Jim Crow.
As a result, the Democratic Party will almost win that battle every time.
And as states like Georgia and Texas become more liberal because companies have decided to leave states like California and relocate to the South because of lower taxes, the Republican Party will have to deal with lower votes until they realize that times are a-changing and life will never go back to the “good ole days” for the good ole boys.