Washington. Thousands of people demonstrated this Saturday across Washington, D.C. and other cities in the United States to demand their right to vote, as several Republican-controlled states have passed or are on their way to giving the green light to laws restricting minority suffrage.
In the American capital, the rally ran with a vengeful and at the same time festive tone, with shouts, songs, and dances through downtown streets all the way to the Mall, the plaza that stretches from the Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial, in honor of President Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865).
In this way they celebrated the 58th anniversary of the historic March on Washington, where civil rights leader, Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. (1929-1968), delivered his “I Have a Dream” (I Have a Dream) speech.
Protest participants carried banners with messages such as “Protect civil rights” or “It’s 2021, why do we still have to fight for the right to vote?”
Eyes in the Senate
This year’s protest aims to pressure the Senate to pass the John Lewis Civil Rights Development Act, which increases the federal government’s power to block discriminatory legislation.
The bill got the go-ahead this week in the House of Representatives, but is facing difficulty in the Senate, where most Republicans oppose it.
In parallel, several states in conservative hands have passed legislation to restrict minority voting, as in Texas, where the state’s House of Representatives on Friday approved a rule its critics warn makes it more difficult in Africa. Americans and Latinos to vote.
In his speech during the protest in Washington, Luther King Jr’s son, Martin Luther King III, warned that the current moment is dangerous because within weeks state conventions will map constituencies and they will do so in a way that, in many cases, will hinder minority voting.
In 2022, midterm elections are scheduled in the United States, in which, among other things, the country’s two houses of Congress will be renewed.
Parallel to the march in Washington, there were similar rallies in Atlanta, Houston, Phoenix and Miami.
Although many people took to the streets on Saturday, this year’s demonstrations are less intense than those of 2020, which erupted at the height of the protests after the killing of African-American George Floyd by a white policeman in Minneapolis (Minnesota). ) in May.
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