WHAT NEXT AMERICA?
So it seems that our esteemed Congress, led by Southern Republicans and those on the front line of the current immigration debate, are holding up extension of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. (Read more about it in Yahoo! news or Mother Jones.) Republicans claim that some provisions of the Voting Rights Act are no longer necessary--such as supervision in nine states of polling procedures and the printing of bilingual ballots in areas with heavy non-English speaking populations. (You might have missed this, since the mainstream media certainly didn't cover it all that well, but one of the provisions of the new immigration bill passed by the Senate made English the official language of the United States. All well and good, except that now we can see the consequences of that...it starts with printing ballots only in English and ends who-knows-where?)
Although one would like to think that even if the Voting Rights Act isn't extended voting rights will still be protected, all a person has to do is to look back at the 2000 elections to realize that we need all the protection we can get. If your skin is brown (or reddish) or you have ovaries it pays to remain ever vigilant. Every day, right-wing Republicans are starting to look more and more like the intolerant, bigoted, extreme religious fascists they claim to hate. I don't even have to squint anymore to see the similarities. My advice--write to your Congressperson to pressure them into extending the Act. We have nothing to lose and everything to gain.