As we wait for the final swing-state votes for 2020, the constant battle, not only between Democrats and Republicans, but Twitter and Trump, grows more and more slimy, confusing, and downright un-American.
Regardless of which party you align with, I beg you to take a step back and realize the severity of voter suppression outrightly influencing this election. And, I say outrightly because voter suppression has been a lingering issue in American government since the Jim Crow Era. As the fifteenth amendment was passed, America's value of democracy morphed into literacy tests, poll taxes, and voter intimidation at the polls. These tactics evolved to the present day where long lines and distance serve to deter people from the polls and court cases like Shelby County v Holder reverse progress for voter rights. Voter suppression remains an issue today, primarily for minorities.
While the distance to vote and the long lines are more subtle, Donald Trump has taken the underlying flaws in the rooted suppression of American voting and concretely tweeted them.
Throughout the race, Trump urged Americans to not vote by mail due to fraud, despite rates of voter fraud being extremely low and the President himself voting by mail before. Many began to wonder, does this have anything to do with the overwhelming amount of Democrats planning to vote by mail?
But, it goes way beyond this. As mail in ballots are being counted and swing states are starting to turn more blue, Donald Trump's Twitter has truly defied what I thought was humanly and professionally acceptable for the leader of our country, urging states to simply stop counting American's votes. There are no other reasons to stop counting other than bias and voter suppression, as Trump even specified he is okay with continuing to count on the states he is currently losing, like Nevada and Arizona, but not states he is winning and fears mail in ballots would alter. He quite literally tweeted, "STOP THE COUNT!" This is one of the few tweets Trump has been able to keep up in the past few days, as Twitter has been flagging his content as misleading...
How could this be? How could the President, the person who is supposed to exemplify integrity, strength, compassion, and patriotism, want to halt the voices of his people? Surely, regardless of party, Americans respect the democratic process, right? Even Trump's supporters such as Mitch McConnell, Chris Christie, Marco Rubio, and more have stated they do not support Trump declaring victory before all American voters speak. However, although Trump's actions may seem strange, the truth is, it's only a small insight as to what is going on in the greater American system.
This election, at the hands of Trump's unprofessional Twitter, revealed flaws that have long been lingering since Jim Crow. After the winner is declared, we cannot put the issue of voter suppression on the back burner till 2024 and, instead, both sides of the aisle need to fight towards a better and moral democracy.
I hope that whoever you voted for this election or whichever party you typically align with, you still recognize the extreme danger of this type of indefinite voter suppression and respect the voting process. What Donald Trump is valuing in his, possibly, last moments of presidency is the silencing of the American people; this is where patriotism turns into nationalism, and where politics seep into ethics.