I am exploring a new feature here on Coffee Rhetoric. As I still consider this a personal blog platform where I'm the sole writer and contributor and hadn't really entertained the prospect of featuring other work, this election year is stretched tighter than an aging Hollywood actress’s face. As aware as I fancy myself to be, I’m not well-versed in the art of writing about political issues… at least not with enough insight and snark as I insert into other ramblings. Writing about the social impact of popular-culture, the arts, film, etc. is more my speed. So I “stay in my lane” as it were, with little to no regret. However, one of my favorite online platforms features a lot of interesting content and is predominantly political in its approach. I can't think of a better blog to cross-posts from. Going forth, I will be re-publishing excerpts from Intersection of Madness & Reality’s more highly-charged posts on politics, political figures, and related content, on a frequent basis, starting now…
Voter Suppression: We Survived the Slave Ships; Those Voter ID Laws Ain’t Shit to Black Folks
By Rippa; Orig. published Sept. 22, 2012
Listen; in 2016 it could very well be nearly impossible to cast a vote if you’re African-American. Given the way things are playing out right now, Barack Obama winning in November could be the end of the black vote. If you think his 2008 victory pissed off the GOP, wait till you see what happens once he secures a second term. If you think they made it harder for “certain people” to vote this year, you ain’t seen nothing yet. White Supremacy will be so mad that Obama kicked its ass twice in a row that they’ll make it even harder for us to vote. Yep, Jim Crow will be back like a mu’fugga.
Think I’m playing? Shoot, by 2016, black folks will be required to produce ticket stubs from the ride on the slave ship to be able to cast a vote. Hell, the GOP might make it so bad that black folk will have to produce triplicate copies of a birth certificate with one’s original African name to be able to vote in 2016. Yep, y’all better start putting in your requests now while it’s still early. Uh-huh, don’t get caught slippin’ like hopefully none of you will be when it comes to voting on November 6th, 2012.
Speaking of which, voting has already started in several states across the country. I don’t know where you my dear reader may live, but hopefully by now you’re aware if you’re required to produce a new Voter ID to cast a ballot this year. Of course I know you’re thinking, “What’s the big deal, RiPPa. Shit, how hard can it be to get an ID?” I know, many people may not see the hardship involved in obtaining the proper identification to vote. But please believe, for many, it has been no easy task. Having said that, you don’t want to mess around and wait till the last-minute to attempt to obtain one. Not only could it be a major inconvenience, you also stand the chance of running into some pissed off black people. And I don’t know if you know this, but black folks waiting for four hours in long lines at the DMV aren’t as happy as the Negroes on those slave ships.
Philadelphia — Cheryl Ann Moore stepped into the state’s busiest driver’s licensing center, got a ticket with the number C809 on it and a clipboard with a pen attached by rubber band, and began her long wait Thursday to become a properly documented voter.
[...] Moore bent over a folding table and carefully filled out the form a Pennsylvania Department of Transportation worker had given her, in the first line she would stand in that day. Her ticket was time-stamped 11:38 a.m. and gave an estimated wait time of 63 minutes, which, said Moore, didn’t seem so bad. She had been registered to vote since she was 19, and now she was 54.
“I’m on vacation this week,” she said, “so I thought, ‘Let me just get this done now,’ because by the time we get to November, you won’t be able to get in this place.”
She looked around. Nearly all of the 200 plastic chairs in the long room were filled with her fellow citizens — people trying to get licenses to drive mixed in with people trying to get licenses to vote. The bin on the wall that held applications for the “Pa. voting ID” was empty.
[...] Cheryl Ann Moore was such a grown-up. She owns her home, a small rowhouse in South Philadelphia. She’s held the same job for 24 years, as a custodian at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, where she works the 4-a.m.-to-noon shift. To get there, she takes the bus in the middle of the night. She doesn’t have a driver’s license, like thousands of working people in a city with one of the lowest rates of car ownership in the country.