W.E.B. Du Bois was a prolific Black scholar and educator. He was also a writer whose critiques of American democracy and racial inequality in this country have resonated with every generation since each of his published works appeared for mass consumption. Now, faced with an election where many young people are asking themselves, “Should I vote for Hillary Clinton just to prevent a Trump presidency?” Du Bois’ strong reasons for avoiding the polls 60 years ago seem all the more relevant.
While Bernie Sanders hasn’t fully conceded his Democratic race for the presidential nomination to presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton, he has learned to choose his battles more wisely.
“I don’t have the votes to become the Democratic nominee, you know that, I know that, we’re good at arithmetic,” Sanders told CNN’s Chris Cuomo.
Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee for President, is working tirelessly to distance herself from her (former) friend, Republican nominee Donald Trump. Her method in doing so suggests that she is somehow critically different from him. But, young people of color don’t seem to be buying that claim. This begs the question: Why are her supporters struggling to understand this dissonance? Well, it’s likely because many of those in the Clinton camp have a problematic definition of racism and, to a larger extent, systematic oppression in general.
Prominent Black Lives Matter activist, DeRay McKesson, was the last candidate to join Baltimore’s mayoral race this past February. Some viewed it as an example of someone trying to be the change they want to see. Others were more suspicious of both his qualifications and the campaign’s intentions.
McKesson was attempting to translate a large social media presence and experience with public activism into a run in local politics. But after all of the votes were counted in Baltimore’s mayoral primary election, McKesson walked away with just over 3,000 votes, which only adds up to about 2 percent and landed him in sixth place.
The political framework in the state of Maryland is building up to make the next election very interesting. Just a couple of weeks ago, DeRay McKesson, a prominent Black Lives Matter activist, announced that he’s running for mayor of Baltimore. Now, Maryland has given recently released felons the right to vote in the upcoming election.
The daily routine of watching Bernie Sanders fans hell-bent on bullying people of color on social media and hopelessly loyal Hillary supporters claiming her campaign an intersectional victory has left me feeling even less apt to cast my vote for either candidate in November.
As a young Black, queer woman of middle-class means and working-class roots, I have never been excited by this year’s Democratic presidential hopefuls. Both Clinton and Sanders have shown a keen disinterest in the issues which I care most about like public education reform, the end of mass incarceration, police occupation of Black and Brown communities, and the intentional investment in Black futures. Instead, they have engaged in political rhetoric and performance that holds literally no meaning for me.
The NBA brought formal charges against Donald Sterling on Monday. The Los Angeles Clippers owner was accused of damaging the league and its teams with his racist comments.
A hearing, slated for June 3rd, gives owners the chance to terminate Sterling’s ownership of the team with a vote.
For a third time, Senate Republicans blocked a vote that would open debate on the Paycheck Fairness Act. The act would hold employers more accountable for wage discrimination against women.
Some members of Rutgers University voted to cancel plans for Condoleezza Rice to speak at the May’s commencement ceremony.
Professors at Rutgers-Newark voted to call on the administration to disinvite the former Secretary of State because of her role in the Iraq war.
The Justice Department has announced its intent to sue the state of Texas over its voter ID law.
The law was passed after the recent Supreme Court decision that threw out a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, and requires that voters present government-issued photo identification. Student IDs are not permissible.
The lawsuit will contend that the new law is an attempt to deny or restrict the right to vote to minorities, students, and the elderly.
“This represents the department’s latest action to protect voting rights, but it will not be our last,” said the attorney general.
On June 25, the Supreme Court threw out the most powerful part of the Voting Rights Act, whose enactment in 1965 marked a major turning point in black Americans’ struggle for equal rights and political power. The Justice Department’s legal action in Texas is based on another provision in the law. Texas Gov. Rick Perry has called the Obama administration’s actions an “end-run around the Supreme Court.”
Intervening in the redistricting case would enable the federal government to seek a declaration that Texas’s 2011 redistricting plans for the U.S. Congress and the Texas State House of Representatives were adopted in order to deny or restrict the right to vote on account of race, color, or membership in a language minority group.
Thoughts on Texas’ voter ID law, and the continued attacks on our right to vote?
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