In a Letter-To-The-Editor published in The New York Times titled “Race and Voting Rights,” Ryan P. Haygood, the Director of LDF’s Political Participation group sets the record straight:
To the Editor:
Re “Mistrust in North Carolina Over Plan to Reduce Precincts” (news article, July 8):
While there is no dispute that “the overt racism of the 1960s is largely a thing of the past,” it is also true that in far too many places affected by the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision voiding a critical section of the Voting Rights Act, racial discrimination continues to flourish.
One of the indignities of discrimination is the insistence on simply reducing it to “feelings.” But it is a matter of fact, not perception, that all of North Carolina’s voting provisions disproportionately affect racial minorities. Whether local officials are “shocked” by allegations of racial motives is beside the point.
Those who believe that discrimination in voting is wrong will stand up and support efforts to move the bipartisan Voting Rights Amendment Act forward. On the other hand, those who remain silent cannot credibly claim to support access to that fundamental right for all.
RYAN P. HAYGOOD
New York, July 8, 2014