Monday, August 28, 2006

Voter Suppression 101

I hate to give Congressman Mark Green and the Wisconsin Republicans any more ideas about how to suppress voter turnout, but this Wausau Daily Herald story is fascinating:
Kids Voting a lesson in democracy

How many votes must a candidate receive in order to become president if an election is decided by the House of Representatives?

If the two houses of Congress cannot agree on adjournment, who sets the time?

Those are just two of the 68 questions that were asked of voters in the South before literacy tests designed to discourage blacks from voting were banned by the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Some eighth-grade classes will be answering those same questions this fall at Horace Mann Middle School as they study democracy, suffrage and citizenship through the Kids Voting USA program.

"That will be something new we will try as part of the program," said Al Betry, social studies department chairman at Horace Mann Middle School in the Wausau School District.

"I think what it does is it really brings history alive," he said. "It makes them put themselves in someone's shoes who was being discriminated because of racial or ethnic issues."

Whites did not have to take the test, even if they were illiterate, because they were "grandfathered in."


At 2:02 PM, Blogger Whirl-Away said...

--Spin 101--
Never let the facts get in the way of the spin.

--History 101--
Source link

"More than a half-million black men became voters in the South during the 1870s (women did not secure the right to vote in the United States until 1920). For the most part, these new black voters cast their ballots solidly for the Republican Party, the party of the Great Emancipator, Abraham Lincoln."

"In 1902, Mississippi passed a law that declared political parties to be private organizations outside the authority of the 15th Amendment. This permitted the Mississippi DEMOCRATIC Party to exclude black citizens from membership and participation in its primaries. The 'white primary,' which was soon imitated in most other Southern states, effectively prevented the small number of blacks registered to vote from having any say in who got elected to partisan offices--from the local sheriff to the governor and members of Congress."

"When poll taxes, literacy tests, 'grandfather clauses,' and 'white primaries' did not stop blacks from registering and voting, intimidation often did the job. An African-American citizen attempting to exercise his right to vote would often be threatened with losing his job. Denial of credit, threats of eviction, and verbal abuse by white voting clerks also prevented black Southerners from voting. When all else failed, mob violence and even lynching kept black people away from the ballot box."

At 2:24 PM, Blogger Xoff said...

Republicans from a century ago would be Democrats now and vice versa.

I am much more interested in who is trying to disenfranchise black voters today, in 2006, by throwing up as many barriers as possible. We both know that's the Republican Party.

At 2:37 PM, Blogger Whirl-Away said...

Then I'm sure you'd be on board for all Republicans to get free Run-Flat tires from the transportation fund?

At 8:28 AM, Blogger Third Eye said...

This comes from a mouthpiece for a party that made an effort to keep Ralph Nader's name off the last presidential ballot. As such, I'd say you have little credibility on this issue, Xoff.

At 2:57 PM, Blogger realdebate said...

No kidding. You have no stance to speak to electoral integrity Bill. Yours is the party of stolen elections.

The only votes the Republicans are not in favor of being cast are illegal ones. (your favorite kind)

At 1:18 PM, Blogger GWC shadow said...

How many Packs of Cigarettes are you planning to hand out Bill in Nov. Will I get a cartoon if I vote twice


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