Justin Terrell is the Justice 4 All Program Manager at TakeAction Minnesota. For more information abou the Saturday Restore the Vote MN Rally and Door Knock, contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After every election, Minnesotans love to talk about high turnout at the polls. Even when we have recounts and narrow victories, the story on the news is always about our proud voting tradition.
But the reality about that tradition is much more complicated. Black folks are missing out on elections at an alarming rate. Many of us have had our Civil Right to vote taken away by the Justice System. Some of us just don’t believe our country’s democracy is for us. And why would we?
When I hit the block with a clip board, all I hear is “Vote? Vote for who? What are they going to do for me?” and I have finally learned to stop arguing. The answer to the question is “nothing.” No one is going to do anything for our community. As a matter of fact, they will pass policies that result with more Black folks behind bars than during slavery. Corporations will make sure that unemployment stays consistently high and our wages drop through the basement. Not only will people in power not help us, they will fight against us for their own personal gain.
Well, I say enough is enough. Instead of encouraging folks to vote, I am encouraging folks from my community to build. Build a block of voters that hold elected officials accountable. Build an agenda with policies that work in our interest. Build leaders to run for offices. Build organizations focused on power for our community.
This Saturday, we are hitting the doors on the North Side of Minneapolis and the East Side of St. Paul. Our goal is to generate support for the restoration of voting rights for people who have had their rights taken away because they are currently on probation and parole for a felony conviction. Please join us, change starts by connecting with each other in the community. Here is the information to get involved:
Restore the Vote MN Rally and Door Knock
Saturday, September 20th
10:30am – 3:00pm
MN Neighborhoods Organizing for Change
911 West Broadway
Minneapolis, MN 55411
St. Paul Location
Hope Lutheran Church
1340 Hazel St N
St Paul, MN 55119