Despite record numbers of voters who turned out during the presidential primaries last spring, eight million African-Americans are still not registered to vote.Note: Before anyone thinks otherwise, I am by no means saying these people should be registering to vote so that they can get Obama into the White House. I'm certainly not advocating that they register to be Democrats either, considering where I stand on that issue. I also realize that lots of whites aren't registered either. But I'm not talking about whites, I'm talking about us.
This according to Rick Wade, African-American vote director for the Obama for America presidential campaign.
“Our principle focus has been a 50-state voter registration initiative. I think we all appreciate that if we increase the number of African-American registered voters and then increase turnout and get people to the polls on Nov. 4, then Sen. Obama will be the next president of the United States,” Wade says.
Wade explains that the eight million unregistered Black voters accounts for 32 percent of eligible Black voting population nationwide. But, the Democrats are not alone in going after the Black vote. Republicans, who barely get a tenth of Black voters in presidential elections, say they are not giving up.
My biggest qualm is that in an era where jobs are being shopped overseas, gas prices are out of control, school funding is down, we're in a war approaching a decade in duration, and T-Pain is still using that damn vocoder, how could anyone willingly sit on the sidelines?
I'm not saying voting changes everything. It clearly doesn't. But in today's environment, how can you not care enough to simply register, let alone vote. How damn lazy and nihilistic must you be to not care about who your mayor, city council, and school board are, and what they're doing with your tax money?
I guess this should serve as a wakeup call. If folks can't even get interested enough in merely registering to vote (let alone actually voting) when there's a Black man with a legitimate chance of becoming President, what hope is there for us?
I make lots of jokes here all the time, but I have to issue a serious challenge to my readers. If you know of a friend or family member who for some odd reason is still not registered to vote, help them. Forward them the link below, and lovingly hold their hands through the process. Spend a couple of minutes lovingly telling them why it's important. Do not mention the words "Barack" or "Obama"! He is completely irrelevant. If folks don't care to vote for their local officials, a President is going to be the least of their concerns. Worry about first things first.
If you've got that base covered and want some extra credit, find a local organization like a church, civic group, or frat/sorority that is actively holding a voter registration drive. Volunteer and assist.
But whatever you do, don't just sit on your hands. I assume that all of you who read this blog are voters, and you're voters because someone (likely your parents) at some point made sure you understood the importance of exercising your right. Someone helped you understand that our people were not given that right by the Constitution. Our people had to fight, struggle, and in many cases die for that right.
Getting your ass out of bed on November 4th and waiting in line for a few minutes is a small price to pay for what our forefathers only dreamed of.
We should all be ashamed.
Ashamed enough to do something about it.
Fannie Lou Hamer is crying inside.
Question: Do you personally know someone who is eligible to vote, but not registered? Can you commit to getting these folks registered? Other than the obvious reason (nihilism) why do you think so many people have so little interest in the democratic process?
Register To Vote at ProjectVote.org
Eight Million African-Americans Still Not Registered to Vote [Seattle Medium]
 Go ahead and insert your own "Yaw's Boy" joke here. I know, I walked right into that one.