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New Voting Laws Show That the Struggle Continues


New Voting Laws Show That the Struggle Continues

Wendy Weiser

Growing up in Mississippi more than 50 years ago, Sammie Louise Bates had to help her grandmother count the money needed to pay poll taxes. Living under Jim Crow laws angered Bates — and inspired her to become a lifelong voter.

Bates was 25 when the Voting Rights Act passed in 1965, abolishing poll taxes and other discriminatory voting practices. For most of her life she did not face hurdles to the ballot box like her grandmother did.


How about online voting with encrypted ballots? No lost paper ballots, no hacked voting machines, voting from anywhere, a paper trail of ballot copies, no long lines, encryption safety, a greatly enhanced voter turnout and Republican’s greatest nightmare?


It’s not hard to suggest ways to encourage voting, participation in our democracy. The fact is that those who have that power, our elected Representatives both Democrat and Republican don’t want it. They don’t want to upset the apple cart. They don’t want to have to satisfy new constituencies, new primary challenges, demands made upon them which they can now easily slough off.

In most of the country limiting voting is also a powerful way to preserve white privilege and as such, in the coded dog whistle racism, which prevades our politics This reflects the still deep stain of racism in our Nation’s soul.