Why the 2014 Midterms Should Matter to Black Voters

Voters hold up signs as they walk to an early-voting site to cast their primary-election ballots on Aug. 11, 2014, in Miami.  JOE RAEDLE/GETTY IMAGES
Voters hold up signs as they walk to an early-voting site to cast their primary-election ballots on Aug. 11, 2014, in Miami.
JOE RAEDLE/GETTY IMAGES

Just because there’s no presidential candidate on the ballot doesn’t mean midterms don’t matter.Too many of us think that since the president isn’t on the ballot in 2014, Tuesday’s midterm election doesn’t matter. But it’s time to get rid of this misconception for the last time. Pollsters and prognosticators are speculating that African Americans won’t turn out, but this election has more at stake than the election of the first black president. This election is about protecting our children, economic development, making wise investments in our community and electing candidates that will protect America’s future and not auction it off to the highest corporate bidder.

Now is the time for African-American voters to show our collective strength at the ballot box. Of all the days to want to get involved, this is the day. Now’s the time to vote, and to take your friends and families with you to the polls. Here are five reasons why:

Keeping our communities safe. Too many black men and boys are dying. The statistics are downright tragic. Although no lawmaker or law can change that overnight, we need to get out and vote for the people who make the decisions on what happens next. We can take a stand for Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, Michael Brown and so many others of our young men who have lost their lives by electing leaders who will repeal “Stand your ground” laws, push to eliminate racial profiling and stop-and-frisk policies, and work with their communities to end the overmilitarization of local police departments.

Health care. While many Americans remain critical of the Affordable Care Act, the impact of the law has been astounding in the African-American community. Obamacare has provided 6.8 million uninsured African Americans with new opportunities for affordable health insurance coverage. We African Americans can use our ballots as a way to register our support for health care reform and to oppose any attempt to repeal it.

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Source: The Root | 

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