This year, we are facing a clear choice in the 2012 election. We can continue to fight for moving our country forward with President Obama. Or we can take our country back with the Republicans. Republicans and their Tea Party faction are proud to announce they want to take us back instead of forward. And if you’re African American or another minority, a woman, the elderly, students or anyone in between, going back is a scary option. And we’ve seen already seen some of the signs of Republicans taking us back.
Republicans have attacked voting rights with a vengeance since before the last election. And now over half of the states have some sort of voter ID laws which make voting, a constitutional right, a more restrictive right. And in fourteen states, the strictest form of voter ID exists. All of these laws amount to a massive and systemic attack on the constitutional right to vote. Subtly they amount to a poll tax for those who must purchase legal documents and in some instances, travel to other counties to obtain proper government ID to exercise their right to vote. Millions of voters could be affected.
The voter rights argument has been clothed in the name of preventing voter fraud. Recently, Republican lawmakers such as Pennsylvania Mike Turzai, have been so bold as to flat out say that is not the purpose. Turzai told members of his party that the Pennsylvania voter ID law will help Mitt Romney win Pennsylvania and the election. And during a recent Pennsylvania trial, Pennsylvania lawmakers said there is no evidence of in person voter fraud in Pennsylvania or elsewhere in the country.
Then there’s the assault on women, women’s rights and women’s health issues. Instead of moving the country forward with jobs, the GOP is focused on taking away funding for Planned Parenthood, attacking women such as Georgetown Law student, Sandra Fluke, who speak out against Republicans and preventing women from getting breast cancer and other health screenings through Planned Parenthood.
When I was in grade school, we learned that America was a big melting pot of persons of all nationalities, ethnicities and genders. And growing up in Baltimore, we celebrated the diversity of persons every summer with weekly fairs honoring the city’s diverse neighborhoods of African Americans, Polish, Greek, Jewish, Italians and other ethnicities. I grew up respecting the diversity of other persons. Diversity is not a reason for fear as apparently, some Republicans view it.
In less than a month, Democrats will hold their convention in Charlotte on September 4-6. I hope to be a part of the convention and expressing my views.
To help me to better speak out against the injustices against women, minorities and voting rights, please click below on my contest entry link for CNN to send me to Charlotte. By doing so, you will be getting one more voice to speak out against the Republicans and in support of fighting for the soul of our country.
Washington, DC based Debbie Hines is a former prosecutor and founder of LegalSpeaks, a progressive blog on women and race in law and politics. As a legal and political commentator she has appeared in national and local media including the Michael Eric Dyson Show, NBC, ABC and CBS affiliates, RT TV, CBC- Canadian TV, NPR, XM Sirius radio, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Black Enterprise among others. She also writes for the Huffington Post.