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The Idiot's Guide to the Voting Rights Act

Will the Supreme Court pull the teeth out of the law?
by Greg Palast for
This month – as early as tomorrow – the US Supreme Court will tell us whether Black and Brown citizens have the right to vote.
Now, if you saw the film Lincoln, you probably thought that issue was settled about 143 years ago. But Honest Abe never imagined a High Court occupied by Dishonest Thomas and Scalia the Scurrilous.
There’s been a lot of nonsense talk fogging the issue before the Court. To cut through the BS, the Palast Investigative Fund has made a little film, How Do You Steal a Dream?
You could call it ‘The Idiot’s Guide to the Voting Rights Act.’ The idiots, of course, are on the Bench.
We made How Do You Steal a Dream? in coordination with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the organization founded by Martin Luther King.
Give me 14 minutes””watch this film–and I’ll give you something you can do to stop the return of Jim Crow.
What’s at stake is Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. Without Section 5, the Voting Rights Act’s teeth fall out, and the Justice Department loses any real ability to stop Jim Crow tactics used to keep voters of color (mostly Democratic Blue) from registering and casting ballots.
Section 5 requires that 16 states with histories of Jim Crow voting restrictions “pre-clear” any changes in voting procedure with the Department of Justice.
But the right-wing Supremes say that Florida and other states subject to Section 5 no longer play games with voting rights.
Really? If you think that African-American voters are no longer vulnerable to registration purges, hours-long lines to vote in Black precincts, ID challenges and other impediments, I have two words for you: Katherine Harris.
And if you thought “Purge’n General” Harris was bad news for minority voters, her Jane Crow act was nothing compared to Governor Rick Scott’s current push to purge 180,000 “illegal alien” voters from Florida voter rolls.
Those 180,000 American citizens were only allowed to vote in last November’s election because Section 5 was still alive.
Pop quiz: How many “illegal alien” voters did Governor Rick ultimately bust? Go ahead, make a guess. You’re wrong!
Get the answer in How Do You Steal a Dream?
And don’t be an idiot: pass this on. This is a Civil Rights Movement so let’s get moving.
For fourteen years, investigative reporter Greg Palast has exposed racial bias in US voting for BBC Television, for The Guardian and, with Robert F. Kennedy Jr., for Rolling Stone magazine.
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And during this Voting Rights Month, we’ll include the full-color tarot-sized card deck, Jokers’ Wild, including the lovely Katherine Harris above, the Koch Brothers and more.
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