Picture those white and colored signs posted in public buildings in the sixties. Then correlate those signs to white only proms some fifty years later. A close examination is quite revealing. There are currently major discussions regarding discontinuing the Voter Rights Act of 1965. Some are insisting that it is no longer needed. This act outlawed discriminatory voting practices that were disenfranchising African Americans. Do white only proms highlight a truism that laws can be legislated but hearts cannot?
While history was made in Georgia’s Wilcox County High School with its first ever racially integrated prom, the white only prom went on as planned. This school system is just three hours south of Atlanta. As reported by CBS Atlanta News on Saturday, April 28, attempts to interview parents brought out what appeared to be hostility regarding the suitability of continuing a segregated prom. This little town is reflective not only of a white only prom mentality in parts of Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi but there are still separate white and black valedictorians, school queens and other so-called “separate but equal” practices.
CBS Atlanta News also reported that Georgia Governor Nathan Deal’s comment regarding the white only prom was “it is a private matter”. This statement along with the attitude of the parents responsible for organizing the white only prom in Wilcox County should shine a spotlight on the 180 voting restrictions introduced in 2011 and 2012 in forty-one states. Twenty- five laws and two executive actions were passed in 2010 after the election to make it harder to vote. The targets were young and minority voters.
What is the take away? The push to reject the Voter Rights Act, that it is no longer needed is very questionable in parts of society. There is certainly a part of the population that is far from being color blind. See quote below by controversial self-proclaimed racialist and race realist.
“Most whites do not have a racial identity, but they would do well to understand what race means for others. They should also ponder the consequences of being the only group for whom such an identity is forbidden and who are permitted no aspirations as a group.”
― Jared Taylor