Join Me in Raleigh
If you have been following the headlines like me on voter suppression initiatives in North Carolina and other states, you are worried—worried about what this might mean for all those people facing disenfranchisement, future elections, and what democracy in this country looks like. I am worried too. And I need to do something about it.
I received an urgent call from the Rev. Dr. William Barber, president of the North Carolina NAACP, and UU ministers in North Carolina (read their message here) asking me and my fellow UUs to join the Mass Moral March in Raleigh, NC on Sat., Feb. 8 and raise some national consciousness on this issue. Without a second thought, my answer was yes. Will you join me?
According to the ACLU, close to half of the states in the U.S. now have some form of voting restrictions. These restrictions are making it harder for people to vote, particularly people of color, students, and people with disabilities. These tactics range from voter ID laws to the elimination of early voting and same day voter registration to new restrictions on voter registration drives and barriers to voting for people with criminal convictions. We need voting to be free, fair, and accessible! Now is the time to mobilize to defend the freedom to vote.
This isn’t just about North Carolina. Just as Arizona became the flashpoint for immigration reform in 2010, immigration reform is a national issue. North Carolina represents how states across the country are trying to take away people’s right to vote. Today, it’s North Carolina, but tomorrow it could be, and perhaps already is, your state.
The Unitarian Universalist Association’s 5th Principle calls on the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large. If people’s right to vote is taken away or denied, the democratic process is a sham. Defending the freedom to vote is fundamental to our values.
In 1965, hundreds of UUs went to Selma in response to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s call including the Rev. James Reeb and Viola Liuzzo. They died to secure voting rights for all people. Now is our time to make it clear that any restrictions of voting rights will not be tolerated by the American people. Will you answer the call?
UU ministers in North Carolina need you.
People facing disenfranchisement need you.
Our democracy needs you.
Join me in Raleigh, NC on Saturday, Feb. 8 to help defend the freedom to vote.
President of the UUA
P.S. - If you can’t join me in Raleigh, check out the Standing on the Side of Love website for ways you can get involved.