Voting rights for Black Americans have been eroded since the activism of Martin Luther King Jr. and other civil rights leaders, leaving some younger Black Americans today with fewer rights than their parents, King’s grandchild Yolanda King said at a remembrance event on Jan. 18 at the National Cathedral.
Yolanda King cited the Supreme Court’s 2013 Shelby County v. Holder ruling that removed a key provision of the Voting Rights Act that was meant to ensure state and local governments do not pass laws or policies that deny American citizens the equal right to vote based on race.
“Let me bring that home to you loud and clear. If you’re nine years or older and you look like me, then you will have fewer voting rights on your 18th birthday than America promised you on the day you were born,” Yolanda King said at the remembrance event– one day after Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
“Without the right to elect our nation’s leaders and hold them accountable. We can’t get anything else done, but we but when we register and vote and make sure our votes are counted, we build the world.”
Yolanda King’s speech comes as the Senate begins debate on two bills that Democratic leaders say will protect the right to vote.
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