'Map of Shame' Reveals Voter Disenfranchisement
The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights wants you to report anti-voting rights activity
Fresh off the heels of a report that close to five million senior citizens, college students, disabled citizens and people of color could be disenfranchised from their right to vote in 2012 due to new state voter laws, The Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law have unveiled a "Map of Shame," where you can identify anti-voting rights activity in your own state. You can also add your own story of being robbed of your right to vote, or witnessing it happen to others.
From the map you can find a few examples of how certain parts of the electorate are being blocked from exercising their constitutional rights:
- In Tennessee, 96-year-old Dorothy Cooper, a woman who has voted in elections since 1960, attempted to secure the new ID that she would need to vote in the next election. When she arrived at the DMV, she was turned away because, despite having her birth certificate, current voter registration card, and a copy of her lease, she did not have a marriage license to verify the change of name.
- In Texas, thanks to a new voter ID law, students may not use their school-issued photo IDs to vote, while Texans who possess concealed weapons permits are allowed to use their permits to vote. The justification for this seemingly arbitrary rule, according to one state Representative, is that “Texas [is], you know, a big handgun state so everybody has almost got a concealed handgun license over 21.”
The map not only gives you a snapshot of regressive voter laws already passed in certain states, but also gives viewers an update of pending voter laws in other states. Visitors are encouraged to sign an online petition against these laws, while the Lawyers' Committee continues to advocate on behalf of voters' civil rights.