I Am Registered to Vote © 2012 by Wayne D. Lewis, Sr.
I’ve made it no secret that I am registered to vote. I will be re-voting for President Barack Obama. Why? Well, I bought it up, so I’ll answer, shortly. In my years of voting, I was felt pressured to question as to why I voted for any of the former Presidents since I have been registered to vote: George H. Bush, or George H.W. Bush, or Ronald Reagan. No one cared whether I voted for Jimmy Carter, or Bill Clinton. And to be clear, no one has asked me who I am going to vote for now. There appears to be an assumption that I am going to vote for President Barack Obama. The presumption is that because he is black, that blacks will vote for him. No presumption can be further from the truth. I voted for President Barack Obama the first time because he was a qualified, black man for the President of the United States. He has been the most qualified black man to ever run for the Presidency, and to that end, I voted for him. I owed him that because I have always voted for the most qualified white man for more than 25 years. The dynamics of this situation is that when I voted before in 2008, I believed that I voted for the candidate whom I believed addressed the issues important to the country. My mind was not clouded by hatred of one candidate over the other.
Add to my decision many of the most prominent issues that standout from the past in our country:
I am Registered to Vote. In a country that for every 25 years, weighs out whether I and other African Americans should have that right as American Citizens to do so. I am registered to vote, and do not take for granted that at any moment the right to do so, hangs in the balance. I am registered to vote, even as Black ministers encourage their congregants not to only vote for President Obama, but to remain home on November 6, 2012. I am registered to vote, and will continue to do, in hopes that the perceived never-in-my-lifetime event a life time event of electing an African-American President becomes as common place as electing a woman, an Asian, an Hispanic, a person with disability, a Gay or Lesbian, or anyone who is an American who has not fit the historically prescribed image, but instead represents the diversity that is truly America.
I am registered to vote as are other Americans, predominantly Republicans, who try to find ways to prevent me and other Americans who don’t fit the stereotypical image of being white and male, from voting. It is called the Voting Rights Act of 1965, signed in by the late President Lyndon Baines Johnson, (D) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voting_Rights_Act, and my time is borrowed as to when, through the very systems which many of fail to vote, they will successfully take away my right to vote. I am registered to http://www.ushistory.org/documents/i-have-a-dream.htm.vote not only because of those who died, but because of those who live, who to this day, believe that they have nothing for which to vote. My position today is not inconsistent with that of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s, who in 1963, nearly 50 years ago, spoke to why we cannot be satisfied with the way things are. His position: “We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. http://www.ushistory.org/documents/i-have-a-dream.htm. I believe that we are still at that point in American History. That point at which “the negro” believes he has nothing for which to vote.
It is my hope that today’s “negro”, “Black person”, “Colored person”, African-American,” “Person of Color”, Bi-racial or whatever you may subscribe to where your rights to vote are constantly being chipped away, that you will register to vote and that you will vote, as though your life and the life and future of your children depend on it. Why? Because it does. Now, why am I re-voting for President Obama?
I am applying a modified version of the formula from which America has employed every since I have been voting. See my blog entitled: The Formula for Selecting a Presidential Candidate:
I am voting for anyone whom I believe has a modicum of interest in what is best for me, for my family, for my community, for my state and for my country. As a Registered Voter, I am voting for anyone who doesn’t focus on our differences but instead on what brings us together, with an appreciation for our differences. Historically, that has been a White male. And for all intents and purposes, they have done a great job. But the formula, as I have suggested needs to focus on qualifications first. And to that end, I am voting for President Barack Obama. He has shown what he is made of, and I am proud to vote for him------again. Change the Formula. Change America. © 2012 by Wayne D. Lewis, Sr.