Friday, July 05, 2013

Could You Pass The Literacy Test Given To Black Voters In The 1960s?

Buzzfeed's Brian Galindo asks if you could pass a literacy test given to black voters in the 1960s.

For myself, the answer is: no way.
In case you care, I have been called Mensa material several times, and I could not have passed this test for the simple reason that after going through the shock (and, indeed, the insult) of discovering the type of questions asked (15 seconds wasted just there) — which have not an iota of relevance to real life (or to any preparation in real school exams) — I would be wondering if I were answering these — inane — questions entirely right and wasting time every time wondering if there wasn’t some kind of trap somewhere. 

Unfortunately, the article comes in context of the Supreme Court decision to strike down "Section 4(b) of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, a key provision in the law that mandated nine states with a history of racial discrimination, mostly in the South, to get federal permission before they could change their voter laws", suggesting that such obstacles will now reappear in the South.

Indeed, I take issue with many a comment the Buzzfeed post: To everybody dissing the Republicans , let’s not forget too quickly that from the 1870s to the 1960s and 1970s, the segregationist South was in lockstep with the Democrat  party.  

 In the past — indeed from before the Civil War — the Dems counted on the white vote while demonizing minorities. What’s new is that since the 1970s the Dems count on the minorities while demonizing the white race. (Didn’t LBJ go along with civil rights precisely because he saw that now that, in the civil rights era, the Jim Crow-built society was floundering, this would bring all the “Negro” (LBJ’s word) voters to the Dems?) 

To win their elections nowadays, it is true the Democrats don’t exclude people by giving literacy tests. Instead they demonize their opponents as racist (precisely the reason so many feel it a non-brainer to equalize the Jim Crow laws with the GOP), all the while unleashing the IRS on them — along with various other branches of the federal government.  

In addition, they try to import impoverished workers in need of government help to add millions of Democrat voters to the rolls. 

And why do millions of American go along with this?

Isn’t it precisely because they have been convinced (thank you, U.S. school system) that the caricature of conservatives can’t be anything but factually correct?