USA got started with a group of crazed white men, that’s got to be the truth ‘cause that’s where country’s voting rights begin.
Elite, wealthy white-boys responded to the call of directing nascent country, helping her grow tall.
Congress threw its hands up once our Revolution did end, 1783 made land owner voting right restrictions a test for each state to oversee.
Property owners exclusion was thus delegated to the states, abolitionists and suffragettes banded together to sing freedom’s song way back in 1848.
North Carolina was longest holdout in keeping voting for the few, a mere eighty years after we declared our independence her land ownership restriction clause was through.
War between brothers, north against the south, freed slaves from chattel bondage, brought smiles to black mouths. 1866, women and freed-men fought along with Cady Stanton and Sue B. Anthony hoping to grow voting rights to make more people free. (Blacks and white women, though they had a common cause, separated their votes crusade, pragmatism was the cause.)
Eighteen-sixty-eight, that was a banner year, former slaves now citizens, voting rights path is cleared! Oops! Hold on a moment, there’s no federal law, emancipation may be universal but voting’s still states right call. A mere two years later, call to amend was heard, 15th Amendment made voting restrictions based on race absurd.
Jim Crow stood laughing with his raucous band, heartiest guffaws emanated from deepest of south land. Poll tax and litr’acy tests delivered to black few denied them a voice, equality was eschewed.
Susan B. and Sojourner, in 1872, walked up to polling booths and created ballyhoo. Arrested for the crime of voting in pantaloons. (Just a little longer now, voted a half century too soon.)
1876, year of Little Big Horn, indigenous population’s call for voting rights is scorned. In dribbles and drabs in ‘87, ’90 and 1919 more Indians earn voting right; 1947 World War ii marine Miguel Trujillo finally wins the fight.
Chinese, Asian, Filipinos, other “non-whites,” struggle for the franchise; 52’s McCarran-Wright Act finally sets things right.
(Backtrack for a moment, Wyoming set the pace, 1890 admittance to statehood included “gentler” face. White women living in 10th largest state are number one in savoring voting’s sweet taste.)
Cunning and crime, violence and vitriol, used against US citizens who tried to exercise voting call. 1963, pace of change starts to quicken. Poll tax forbidden, registration crusade truly now begins, latter part of twentieth century universal franchise gets a chance to win.
“Free, white and twenty-one,” had long been motto when white men hit age of majority, 1971’s 26th Amendment lowers voting to just eighteen.
DMV voter registration, keeping polling places open late, mail in or early ballots all make election process great.
2016 election is hardest in my life, can’t stomach either party’s candidate, fills my heart with strife. Light that’s been burning over 240 years needs to be brighter, make more voices heard. Please do your homework, discern who you’ll vote for and why, then go to polling places and make despots writhe.
The battle for freedom’s not over, long, long way to climb, call for voter identification cards and absurd candidate rhetoric work of putrid slime.
So this November, with heavy or light hearts, participate in democracy; only way to win is if we go and do our part.