Former president, Lyndon B. Johnson once stated that, “The vote is the most powerful instrument ever devised by man for breaking down injustice and destroying the terrible walls which imprison men because they are different from other men.”
I concur with the former president; as I have stated on more than one occasion that, as a member of the Black community, one of the most powerful tools that you have is ‘your vote’.
There was a reason why our ancestors and fore-fathers vicariously fought for the right for Blacks to have the right to vote. Although, during their era, they were not allowed to have a voice in choosing those who were supposed to be elected to look out for them; it never stopped them from fighting for the right to vote for the generations that were to succeed them.
Now here it is nearly, fifty years later, the tears, sweat, blood and efforts from our progenitors are just taken for granted. Because for too long have we allowed potential candidates for public office to come into our communities and solicit the support of leaders, pastors and the community to get them elected into office. And yet once they are elected they totally forget about the promises made.
For this cause I say it is time to make those we elect accountable of the tasks that they were elected to do. Now, I hear many African-Americans complaining about the situation that their communities are in, but very few people seek to write letters to their local council members, state senators or any of the individuals who were elected to make a difference in the community.
We MUST Understand, fundamentally, that the majority of elected officials care about one thing: votes. However, this benefits you as an individual because, the key to securing votes and the power needed to hold elected officials accountable – are people and money. Therefore, members of the community should, analyze elected officials. Analyzing elected officials means to, learn as much as possible about your elected officials agenda as possible. After all YOU elected them to represent YOU!
Furthermore, We MUST Understand that once we encounter an elected official who refuses to do their job, we have a duty to get rid of them. It is imperative that they start putting the country and the people first. If your congress person votes against things that are important to you and your area, you’ve got to vote against them, which is one of the best ways to get their attention. You have got to let them know that their career is not a priority – your job, your family and your future are.
We MUST Understand, that it does you no good to support or vote someone into office just because. If you are really concerned about a candidate for public office then research that person.
You should always elect to find out what an individual believes in and his or her ultimate motives for desiring to represent an area, district, city, state or otherwise.
You see African-American News & Issues readers, when we do not hold those we elect into office accountable for their actions and responsibilities, we are in essence saying that we are not concerned with the very important decisions that they make regarding our communities.
Concluding, I would just like to state that in no way, shape, form or fashion am I trying to impose on anyone’s’ agenda as far as who he or she supports, but I am trying to convey that you should make those you support accountable for the roles that they assume.