Last week, Martin Luther King Jr.’s daughter Bernice King said that she’d be honoring her father on this holiday by fighting voter suppression.
Count me in.
Voting rights was central to what Martin Luther King Jr. and his supporters fought for, and was key to Congress passing the Voting Rights Act of 1965. You can watch a short video of that successful fight HERE.
But the passage of that historic act did not stop voter suppression, and we can see in the news that it is alive and well today. Voter purges. Felony disenfranchisement. Voter ID. Modern day poll taxes. Eliminating polling locations. The list goes on and on.
Take a moment to honor Martin Luther King Jr. today by fighting voter suppression. Here’s several ideas for you — why not start with one today?
Ways to fight voter suppression
It helps to know what voter suppression looks like. Take some time during the holiday to watch Suppressed: The Fight to Vote. Click the title to watch the documentary, which only runs about 35 minutes.
Another way to stay educated about all of the voter restrictions that are being proposed across the country (as well as ways to counteract those proposals), is to follow the work that the Brennan Center for Justice is doing. Click this link to see the work they’re doing specifically with voter suppression.
Join Fair Fight, the organization Stacey Abrams set up to tackle voter suppression, or at least sign up to get their email updates.
Get involved with Spread the Vote, which helps people get the ID they need to vote.
You’ve likely heard about the fight to re-enfranchise people who’ve served their sentences in Florida, and how Republicans want them to pay a poll tax before they can vote again. You can help by donating to the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition which helps returning citizens pay off their fines so they can register to vote.
Learn how to become a poll worker in your county. The best way to ensure that every voter is treated according to the laws is to do it yourself. Check out the Election Assistance Commission for information to see if you could be eligible in your state.
And finally, you can always get involved with registering voters! Here’s 15 Ways to Get More People Registered to Vote.