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Below, I've posted a commentary by Robert Kutter. Please read and provide feedback to this board.

"Our people perish from the lack of knowledge".

In Love and Light,

Brenda **********************************************************************

The American Prospect

December 11, 2000

The Lynching of The Black Vote

By Robert Kuttner

Many books will be written about the stolen presidential election of 2000. And when they are, one prominent factor will be the Republicans systematic and extra-legal effort to reduce black voting, details of which are just now being pieced together.

Black turnout was way up this year, and nowhere more dramatically than in Florida. Black voters there were upset with Governor Jeb Bush's retreat on affirmative action.

They were mobilized by effective registration and get-out-the-vote drives by civil rights groups and black churches. *********************************************************** For the complete article, please click on the link below.


-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000


My hope is that we as a people don't be discouraged to vote in 2004. I also hope we don't take this lying down and make the Republicans aware that we Know what they've done.

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

Vice-President Gore deceived the black folk with his lies as he tried to appeal to the greed and something for nothing rather than the issues. He went to black pulpits and pretended to preach. Some of our ministers allowed him to make sport while they danced to his tune. Now he will get what he deserves, a well earned vacation. Thanks be to God. Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

Pastor Paris

That is why we should have separation of Church and State. I believe that if George W. Bush is elected president (I'm not sure what effect last night's Supreme Court decision will have) come 2004 he'll be in the black pulpits as well. What song will you sing then?

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

Interesting perspective, Pastor Parish. I agree that the Vice President has deceived people and so has GW Bush. However, the bigger picture is the veil of ignorance has been lifted! Afrikan people can now finally see this unrighteous system for what it really. A system not designed, not created, nor intended for the liberation and freedom of anyone other than the material world. The Republican cunning antics demonstrated the length ďfolksĒ would go for the acquisition of power.

I donít believe that Gore needs a vacation as much as Afrikan people need to wake up. I donít want the same type of governmental management that you have in Texas. It is TOTALLY unacceptable. Based on the stats provided by the Texas correction board, there are a disproportionate number of minorities on death row. Sometimes it takes pain for us to remember.

In all due respect, Pastor Parish gloating over this ill-fated election is something I donít understand. There is no victor, only victims. This country must reap what it has sowed, including its so- called leaders.

I praise Father/Mother for the lesson. I hope we donít get beat up too badly in the process.

In Love and Light, Brenda

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

Bravo and Amen Sis. Brenda!!!!!

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

Isn't it sad that the vote our people worked so hard to obtain was just taken away. How many African Americans had to die to obtain the vote? The hopes, dreams and struggles of our ancestors were taken away by five Supereme Court justices. The saddest yet, is there now a movement initially led by Christie Todd Whitman, Republican governor from New Jersey, to seal the Florida records so no one can tabulate the votes to determine the true winner. This will be done as they say "for the good of America."

I now wonder how George "Dubya" can face the American public. He knows that he did not win the popular vote, nor was it the intent of the citizens of Florida that he carry their state.

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

Just a quick eminder. We live in a democratic republic, not a democracy. it is not necessary to win the popular vote to win the election. See the election of 1888, 1884, 1876 for specifics. We have been in the habit of dual wins in this century, so for many of us alive today this split vote is an anomaly.

The preservation of the Electoral College is a republic (as opposed to Republican, the party) artifact that interestingly enough benefits minorities. Given our current predisposition for concentrated living, the accumulated effect of a Black Bloc is more pronounced in a state (NY, for example) where that bloc can make a difference than it would be in a straight popular vote. I am too tied up in work for the next few weeks to go into specifics, but perhaps a sociologist reading this can offer some enlightenment on the distribution of population and its mapping to the electoral college.

On the matter of Bush's antics: I think there is sufficient "interest" demonstrated by both major parties in seeing their guy through that neither should be exculpated.

US News had an interesting perspective that they elaborated from a quote of a 1988 media specialist. "The media are looking for the candidates basically as cartoons." In their view, today's candidates can be expressed in Disney terms - Gore as Pinocchio, and Bush as Dumbo. The article continued to elaborate on this theme, noting that Bush's poll numbers ran down when he displayed "pinocchio-like" tendencies surounding the drunk driving revelation.

Keys to our success, both Christian and Black, in the enxt 4 years - prayer and activism. Make sure all churches are fully registered, and then make sure folks have ample opportuntities to understand the issues, the candidates' perspective on the issues, and the willingness to make informed choices at the next election.

-- Anonymous, December 13, 2000

I agree with Bro. Jerryl when he says that "prayers and activism" must be a response to this situation. I would add that now is the time for us to "ENCOURAGE" those who have participated for the first time. For many of us, maybe for most of us,the election did not give us the result that we wanted but when we slow down and look at what the Black Vote accomplished, we can hold our head up high. If you can find the speech given by Rev Joseph Lowery, President Emiritus of SCLC, given at the rally in Tallahasie (sp)please do. He pointed out that we should not be giving up or retreating now. Change takes time, citing Nelson Mandela's 27 years in prison but pressed on and eventually prevailed. Rev Lowery said that this is not the benediction but the Invocation. Issues that we have known about for years are now before the world, intimidation, "clerical errors", and other deterents to our voting. Our responsibility, it seems to meis to stand up and make sure they are addressed. Ephesians 6:10-18 comes to mind. SO THAT WHEN THE DAY OF EVIL COMES, YOU MAY BE ABLE TO STAND YOUR GROUND, AND AFTER YOU HAVE DONE EVERYTHING, TO STAND, STAND FIRM

-- Anonymous, December 15, 2000

Supreme Court vs. Democracy?

DAVID COLE, cole@law.georgetown.edu

Professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center, Cole said today: "The U.S. Supreme Court has done what we all feared -- it has decided the election itself, and has done so by a single vote. While the per curiam attempts to mask this fact, only five Justices -- the five who likely voted for George W. Bush on November 7 -- voted to bar any further recounts. That they did so on grounds that there was insufficient time -- after their own intervention had delayed matters -- raises serious questions about the Court's legitimacy. In addition, it is ironic that the five conservative Justices, who typically take the most restrictive view toward individual rights, stopped the vote in the name of the equal protection clause."

RON DANIELS, rdaniel@ccr-ny.org

Executive director of the Center for Constitutional Rights and co-chair of the National Malcolm X Commemoration Commission, Daniels wrote: "Though election irregularities in Florida and across the nation were widespread, the most egregious violation was the thousands of Blacks who did manage to cast ballots only to have them thrown out by voting machines. This problem was aggravated by the disproportionate locating of antiquated voting machines in predominantly Black precincts in Florida. These are the ballots that constitute the 'undercount' which would have been rectified by the manual recount halted by the U.S. Supreme Court."

GWENDOLYN MINK, GMink1@aol.com

Professor of politics at the University of California at Santa Cruz, Mink said today: "The Supreme Court not only stole the 2000 election from the people, it deranged our constitutional order. Yesterday's decision was not just about who will be our president; it also was about the relationship of the Court to democracy. In one fell swoop, the majority jettisoned 40 years of jurisprudence promoting electoral equality. It set time limits on democracy, and then let the clock run out. It cried 'equal protection,' and then discarded votes that endanger its desired electoral outcome. It pleaded 'state's rights,' and then knee-capped the Florida State Supreme Court in interpreting state law. It claimed 'due process,' and then gave the Florida legislature carte blanche to trample the people's rights in elections. This is a throwback to the Lochner Era, when the Court contorted the Constitution to suit its economic and political sympathies."

-- Anonymous, December 15, 2000

the comments of my people distress me so much. We must learn how to lose as well as win if we are to engage in this game of politics. President-Elect Bush will be our president. We should be trying to respond to his outreach rather than fighting the "republicians". Test the spirit by the Spirit. Don't think for one minute that the democrats are in love with black folk. They are interested in what they can get, your vote. Think about this: President-Elect Geogre Bush won without the black vote! Will the democrats be as interested in the black vote next time? He called Jesse Jackson-what did they talk about? What do you think about those three questions? Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, December 15, 2000

One of the overlooked statistics in this year's acrimonious Presidential election is the average turnout of registered voters. While slightly over 100 million ballots were cast this only represented a little over 50% of the eligible voting population. The fundamental problem was neither judicial agggression, Katherine Harris, malfunctioning voting machines or irregular "butterfly ballots". Conspiracy theories will run amok about Bush-led efforts to subvert black voters in FL and the right wing element of the US Supreme Court. Although these "theories" are appealing they must be categorically rejected because they fail to unmask the true culprit. The twin culprits are continued voter apathy and inattention to details. Although voter registration rates increased for some groups, overall the increase was still not enough to produce the clear-cut outcomes desired by either party. Rev. Jackson's indefatigable efforts to enfranchise black and minority voters thru the voter registration drive should be saluted as politically and morally responsible. However, voters who argue that they are disenfranchised because they made errors in completing their ballot are making fradualent claims about injustice and ought not confuse rights with responsibilities. I see absolutely nothing which warants a "protest' demonstration on the day following Bush's inauguration. Inflammatory accusations about a "stolen election" is not only irresponsible rhetoric but more damaging it further exposes blacks to Democratic Party indifference because they know our vote will always be taken for granted. Simply put, many black folks are mad not because "all votes were not counted" but only because Gore did not win. I am confident that few blacks would be angry if the outcome was reversed. There were over one million votes which were not "counted" throughtout the US in this year's Presidential election. Many overseas military ballots were also excluded. Do we count these as well? There are important lessons from this year's Presidential election. Perhaps the most important will be for all voters to take time to follow directions THOROUGHLY & COMPLETELY BEFORE COMPLETING THE ENTIRE BALLOT CORRECTLY[emphasis added] It is simply amazing that some folks faithfully attend horse racing events, complete complicated racing forms with pristine perfection and never quarrel about the outcomes of their personal betting. If voters provide as much detailed attention to voting procedures as they do for trivial activities like figuring the daily Triple-exacta, running a "boston" in bid-wiz card games or playing state supported Lotto gambling our democratic republic would be in far better shape. QED

-- Anonymous, December 15, 2000

Bill, I believe you've got it!

-- Anonymous, December 15, 2000

Bro Dickens, you make several points in your last post that I agree with. In Supremme Court lingo, Rev Paris concurs. However, most of the attention is focused on ballots and incomplete or improper punching etc. My concern is, and this is not just in Florida but around the country including here in Boston, the people who were legally registered yet never did get to vote. Nobody knows the numbers and hopefully there will be investigations to see if these violations did actually occur. Mr Bush will indeed be my president also and I respect the office. I know I will be looking for the GOP outreach but if history repeats intself, I don't see my changing of party affiliation because of anything he may advocate. Party designations are obselete anyways. What it really comes down to nowadays is "Liberal" vs. "Conservative". The first Black US Senator, Ed Brooke, was a Republican from Massachusetts but given the current environment would be too liberal for the GOP and is pretty much ignored by them now. Finally, the ballots are a dead issue now. The breech in the voting wall must be repaired so that ALL registered voters are allowed to vote

-- Anonymous, December 16, 2000

I agree with Bill and Rev Paris on what was said. NEXT TIME WE NEED TO READ THE DIRECTION CAREFULLY. Don't mean to shout, but directions in the palm beach polling station said to punch all the way through on election day to have a valid ballot. G.W. Bush nor his brother stole this election. I still cannnot understand why we blacks will trust a snake (Democrats). They wanted slavery...They didn't want us equal to them. Now since there is suppose to be equal rights, they court us during election time and act like they are for us. I rather trust something who is striaght forward with me than someone who hides behind a mask. It the democrats who try to keep us lock in social programs and dependent on them to survive. Will others groups asians, indians etc.., gets apart of the so-called american dream. Wake up people!!!! Welfare was meant to help during hard times, but to many blacks it has become another form of slavery. In reference to another post... Also from my understanding Texas isn't the only state with a lot of black on death row.

-- Anonymous, December 16, 2000

One quick correction to Brother Bob. The first black senator was Hiram R. Revels, elected in 1870. Please refer to http://www.ils.unc.edu/nc/HiramRevels.html.

-- Anonymous, December 16, 2000

Power must be used to be power. The 13 women in the 50/50 Senate is considered the swing vote. In other words, no legislation can get through the senate unless the women approve. Likewise, the Congressional Black Caucus could be the swing vote in the house. In the previous two congresses, the Black Caucus had enough votes to be the swing vote but they were so loyal to Clinton they could not barter with both sides. Again, Adam Clayton Powell knew how to use his power. He would back a republician or democrat as long as he was able to get what he wanted. The black Dems from Texas can't even be civil to the President-Elect from Texas. You don't have to agree with Bush on everything and you also don't have to disagree with him on everything. I agree, welfare enslaves our people! Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, December 16, 2000

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