Friday, January 07, 2005

Electoral Democracy Thwarted Again

These three college students were viciously murdered by racists outside of a little old country town in Mississippi in 1964. They were killed for their courageous political activism. Remember, in the 1960s many minorities were prevented from voting in America. These three young men were among thousands of students who were campaigning for voting rights in the South during the Freedom Summer of '64. Their names: Michael Schwerner, left, James Chaney, center, and Andrew Goodman.

The men were arrested for "speeding" and spent hours in jail until the nice policemen were sure that the KKK had raised a posse of violent reactionaries. Only then were they released and the chase was on. They were run down by carloads of ugly bigots out on a lonely back road in the middle of the night. The two white guys were simply shot in the chest point blank. The black guy wasn't so lucky -- they beat him until he died.

Murder charges were never brought against the killers. Some of them did serve up to 6 years for lesser charges. But the leader was never even convicted of anything. Justice moves slowly, like a slug. This week, the leader of this gang of racist anti-democrats was finally arrested -- 40 years too late. (His last name is "Killen" by the way, I kid you not.)

It is now 2005, and many minorities are still prevented from voting in a national election. We can rest assured that the right wing has new and improved methods. Violence was rejected by America after those '64 killings. So instead today the far right resorts to technology and tricks.

Today was a sad day for democracy in America, as we stood by utterly powerless while Congress officially approved the electoral votes for Bush and Cheney. A single senator objected eloquently (see link). A few Representatives, viz., Conyers and Kucinich, also spoke out and tried to draw attention to the serious problems in the election system in Ohio. Voting rights in the U.S. have improved significantly since 1964. But if you believe that this election was fair and square, then I would ask you to respond point for point to Senator Boxer and to John Conyers and to the overwhelming and multiple sources of evidence to the contrary. It is not enough to simply shrug your shoulders and say "That's ridiculous" as the Senate did. Nor is it enough to get mad and say "That's anti-American." Come again? Hello? Can't understand you. Are you still there? Anyone home?

Today we watched our officials avoid the issue, since they are the embodiment of the Status Quo. If they will not take this matter seriously, then we should not take them seriously. I would propose that they be voted out of office, except of course this would assume that our votes actually counted. Therefore I do not recommend voting them out. I recommend that we search for other means. I propose that we launch a Freedom Summer of 2005 (or perhaps of 2008).

Meanwhile, check out Senator Boxer's singular cry from the wilderness that went unheard today:

See also this thorough summary of the evidence of election fraud:


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