Give Us the Ballot

Give Us the Ballot

The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America

Book - 2015
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A New York Times Notable Book of 2015
A Washington Post Notable Nonfiction Book of 2015

Countless books have been written about the civil rights movement, but far less attention has been paid to what happened after the dramatic passage of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) in 1965 and the turbulent forces it unleashed. Give Us the Ballot tells this story for the first time.

In this groundbreaking narrative history, Ari Berman charts both the transformation of American democracy under the VRA and the counterrevolution that has sought to limit voting rights, from 1965 to the present day. The act enfranchised millions of Americans and is widely regarded as the crowning achievement of the civil rights movement. And yet, fifty years later, we are still fighting heated battles over race, representation, and political power, with lawmakers devising new strategies to keep minorities out of the voting booth and with the Supreme Court declaring a key part of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional.

Berman brings the struggle over voting rights to life through meticulous archival research, in-depth interviews with major figures in the debate, and incisive on-the-ground reporting. In vivid prose, he takes the reader from the demonstrations of the civil rights era to the halls of Congress to the chambers of the Supreme Court. At this important moment in history, Give Us the Ballot provides new insight into one of the most vital political and civil rights issues of our time.

Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2015.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780374158279
Branch Call Number: 324.6209 BERMAN A
Characteristics: 372 pages ; 24 cm


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May 08, 2015

[Always beware the author who parses among crimes, as in this crime isn't as serious as that serious crime, et cetera.]
This is a silly book, written by a journalist affiliated with The Nation, which has run some raggedy and pathetic and disinformational stories the past 15 years, sure to confuse any true progressive - - which is why they probably should be ignored. This book reframes the various ploys which have been used to disenfranchise citizens from voting and, as Hellen Caldicott once sagely said, voting in America is a two hundred-year-old conspiracy - - they make it as difficult as possible, and never stop doing so. [Strongly disagree with the author on the importance of the hanging chad ballot - - both the purging of the ChoicePoint lists - - on whose board of directors was both Richard Armitage and the Vietnamese-American author of the USA PATRIOT Act - - and the hanging chads, overseen by the former Mrs. Ted Olson, who perished aboard Flight 77 on 9/11/01 - - were equally damning!] What was responsible for G.W. Bush's victory? Idiotic voters who voted for him, the similarity between Bush's campaigh platform and Gore's campaign platform, and the US Supreme Court decision, litigated in Bush's favor by Ted Olson, also the litigator on behalf of Citizens United, et cetera!


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