I Reserve My Right To Withhold My Vote

I Reserve My Right To Withhold My Vote
W.E.B. Dubois











What's painfully obvious to me in the hysteria of this election is that we (Afro Americans) have no clue what damage we have done to ourselves over the last four years nor the damage we are doing to ourselves and our interest right now. I had a Sista ask me if I support President Obama. I told her as a Brotha I absolutely could not and as an American I still say no. She then asked, so you support Mitt Romney? I asked her do I have “fool” written across my forehead? Then out came the platitudes, “I don't agree with everything he has done but he is the lessor of the two evils.......by not voting for President Obama you know you are voting for Mitt Romney right?” Before she could get it out of her mouth I yelled stop! Please do not insult my intelligence with that non sense. I tried to respectfully explain to her that that's a two sided coin. Following that same line of reasoning what is said of the one can also be said of the other. In effect what you're saying is by not voting my vote by default is awarded to the winner. So that being said if President Obama wins, my vote by default is awarded to him. Now does that make you feel better?


Truth be told I reserve my right to withhold my vote so as not to be disenfranchised or marginalized as neither candidate has bothered to address the interest of my community and I'm in good company. One of our most highly esteemed Black intellectuals, William Edward Burghardt Dubois said in 1956 for the very same reason, “I shall not go to the polls. I have not registered. I believe that democracy has so far disappeared in the United States that no "two evils" exist. There is but one evil party with two names, and it will be elected despite all I can do or say.”


( http://www.blackvisions.org/Boards/index.php?topic=17385.0 )


In the last four years all the obstacles we've overcame from slavery to the Civil Rights Movement and all of the victories we've won, have all been for naught. We have marginalized and disenfranchised ourselves to spare the first Black President of these United States any embarrassment or hardships. We have allowed our community to go unnoticed in the Capitol and spit fire on anyone who had the gall to ask this “modern day moses,” what about us? But quiet as it's kept what we have actually done was allowed the first Black President of these United States to set dangerous precedents as it concerns us for future administrations. Now after four or eight years of silence when this President has come and gone and our community is 8 more years behind everyone else do you really think that future administrations will respect our demand for attention when we asked for nothing for eight years? More than likely what will happen is that they will turn our words of condemnation against one another for demanding attention from this President back to us, get up off your buts and do it for your self. In the irony of it all there seems to be a little bit of poetic justice and sadly we have done it to ourselves.


Quick question, at the end of the day what effect has the first Black President had on the Afro American community? Has it brought us closer together or scattered us further apart? Has it advanced the quality of life of the masses of Afro Americans or reduced it? Has it strengthened our base or weakened it? My guess is that these are not questions that a lot of you are ready to answer honestly and that's tragic. One thing's for sure our ancestors didn't fight, march and die for this.



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