I’ll still complain about politics even when I don’t vote – fight me.

I am a non-voter who has the audacity to still be upset that my people are dying. I have been told innumerable times that I am not supposed to be allowed this. “If you don’t vote, you can’t complain” is perhaps the most common non-voter shaming refrain I’ve heard, right up there with “your ancestors died for the right to vote.”

But I am not generally one to accept what society allows me to do as gospel.

I learned this from those very same ancestors, who, as even non-voter shamers acknowledge, lost their lives so that I could do what they weren’t allowed. Some say their deaths were only for my right to vote, but I know they died to get closer to freedom. I know they died also to be able to refuse the vote if it does not work towards that freedom. I know that my people are still dying–still died even when I did vote–and, if anything, my ancestors lost their lives so that I would never let anything get in the way of raising hell about it.

Colin Kaepernick Explains Why He Didn’t Vote

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick has become the face of athletes working for social justice. He’s already done plenty of work, such as organizing a camp for kids in the Bay Area to learn about their rights and donating plenty to the cause.

But it surprised some – especially those that disagree with his stance – when he made it clear that he didn’t vote in the 2016 elections. 

Dr. Barbara Ransby on the GenForward Survey: Young People Are Ready For A Third Party

By: Dr. Barbara Ransby

According to last week’s GenForward survey by political scientist, Cathy Cohen’s Black Youth Project, based at the University of Chicago, young people across the board, dissatisfied with both the Democrats and the Republicans, are eager for a fundamental political change. That is the good news.

W.E.B. Du Bois wouldn’t vote in 1956. Now, 60 years later, his reasons still matter

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.

Bernie Sanders Says He’ll Likely Vote For Hillary Clinton

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.

Trump, Clinton, and A Tale Of Two Racisms

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.

DeRay McKesson Wins 2 Percent Vote In Baltimore Mayoral Primary Race

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.

It’s Simple. I Choose Neither Hillary nor Bernie.

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.