Fifty years ago, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I have a dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial to a crowd of over 200,000 people. The crowd had gathered to protest the dangerous state into which race relations had fallen in the summer of 1963. King’s memorable speech was part of “the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom,” and its solemn cadences ring as powerfully today they did 50 years ago. No one who heard it could forget its immensely powerful assault on segregation, the demise of which no respectable person—northerner or southerner—mourns today. No one should forget that King’s speech was a major catalyst in moving a still reluctant nation to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.State into which race relations had FALLEN? I suppose asshole is thinking back to the glorious era shortly after America's founding when the Founding Fathers ensured that nearly all the black people in the US had some kind of useful function.
But [King] slips badly when he says, “We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote.” The two problems could not be more distinct. The exclusion from the polls of an individual by virtue of race is a denial of what King rightly names “citizenship rights.”...okay...
It is easy to think of a legal remedy that could be introduced against formal prohibitions against the right to vote
just as it is easy to envision remedies to legal barriers to entry into labor markets. Striking them down is a no-brainer because at one stroke the new laws are able to expand opportunities for all citizens and shrink the size of government.Whoa there, it isn't an end in itself to shrink government. Look at your cheapskate nation for fuck's sake.
But wanting some particular political agenda to come before a state legislature does not have those simple virtues. There are thousands of agendas from which to choose, and there is no reason to believe that all people of any race or group should unite behind any of them. While it is easy to forge a strong coalition to remove legal barriers to entry in political and economic markets, it is a treacherous business—and one easily derailed—to try to create a single substantive agenda that people of all races and from all walks of life should support.Isn't there some process through which things like this are worked out? Word's on the tip of my tongue, starts with "politica". Being able to "have things for which to vote" seems like a pretty fucking good idea to me.