The Supreme Court Said So: Burdick v. United States

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Photo by Bill Oxford on Unsplash

Donald Trump would be acting similarly to past Presidents if he issued several pardons just before the end of his term. It’s a power granted to the President under the Constitution, and he wouldn’t be the first to make some questionable choices. A breaking news story has revealed a federal judge approved a Justice Department investigation into a bribery scheme under which pardons might be granted for large political donations. Keep in mind that only one person has the ability to grant pardons for federal offenses; the President of the United States.

While the pardon for pay scheme potentially is a huge story. Little information is available, and that will play out over time. I want to address the number of pardons to come for Trump associates and family members who have not (yet) been charged with federal crimes. Sean Hannity of Fox News has already suggested to the President he pardons his family in advance of what a Biden Justice Department might do. There are suggestions from Trump himself and others that he could pardon himself. Trump recently retweeted a post implying the…


Choose Your Allies Wisely

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Photo by Carol Burns

Gabriel Prosser is dead. The chances are except for a select few in the area of Richmond, Virginia. You have no idea who he is? It’s not surprising that he’s dead, given that he was born in 1776. Yet there’s a good chance he would have lived a lot longer than twenty-four years had he chosen his allies more wisely. It’s also true with better allies; his name might be more recognizable, in the same manner as Nat Turner or Toussant Louverture.

Gabriel Prosser was a blacksmith, and because of his trade, he was “hired out” to other plantations to work though as an enslaved person, “hired out” definitely didn’t mean he was getting paid for his services but that his owner was. Gabriel was also literate and well aware of national and international events, including the Haitian Revolution, which inspired him to plan a revolt of his own. Gabriel decided he would go big, hoping to get 1,000 other enslaved people along with “poor white people,” Quakers, Methodists, and the French, whose own revolution inspired the Haitian Revolution. …


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Photo by Sean Lee at Unsplash

Before Bill Barr took over the position of Attorney General of the United States, there was Jeff Sessions. While Session's time as Attorney General may best be known for recusing himself from Trump's Russia-related investigation, which led to him being publicly humiliated and later fired by Trump. He went out with a band instead of a whimper. On November 7, 2018, hours before he turned in his resignation letter after Trump fired him. Sessions signed a memo severely curtailing the use of consent decrees to curtail and monitor local and state police departments from engaging in unconstitutional and/or racist behavior. …


Politics, Race, And The History You Won’t Find Elsewhere.

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I’d rather write a 2,500-word essay on a historical subject than 500 about myself. That said, there are a few things I’d have, you know. I am a combination of contradictions, humble and arrogant, quiet but cocky, opinionated but entirely without an opinion depending on the subject. The one thing anyone who knows me would agree on is that I love to write. It’s the only way to get out the thoughts that would otherwise allow me no sleep at night.


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Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Once upon a time, there was a boy named Donnie that liked to lie. From an early age, Donnie was not book smart, but he was creative. His parents decided to encourage his creativity and not force him to conform to the same standards as other little boys.

Unfortunately for Donnie, the schools he attended didn’t see things the same way, and he got kicked out of school after school until ending up in a military academy. You might think Donnie wouldn’t fare well in such an environment, but Donnie liked shiny things. He was impressed by the dress uniforms, the medals, and the pomp and circumstance. By his senior year, he was made a Captain and gave orders to the officers beneath him to keep strict discipline. Donnie himself mostly stayed in his room until he was removed from the position, given another where he didn’t supervise anyone. Donnie lied about the incident, of course. …


Would You Trust The Government?

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Photo by Daniel Schuldi on Unsplash

I am not an anti-vaxxer. I have received all the scheduled vaccinations (Mumps, Measles, Hepatitis B, Tetanus, et al.), as have my children. I recognize the seriousness of COVID-19 and that a vaccine is needed to restore any sense of normalcy to the nation. There are people out there, including many Black people, who harbor doubts about any forthcoming vaccine, and their fears are understandable.

The history of the United States Government and vaccinations of people of color is deplorable and goes far beyond the Tuskegee Study, which many people have heard of but are unfamiliar with how heinous the government’s actions were. From 1932–1972, the U.S. Public Health Service embarked on a study of syphilis by withholding a vaccine from a group of Black men, many unaware they had the disease, to see what would happen. They not only withheld treatment, watching them suffer and die. They said and did nothing as the men passed the disease along to their family members and others, often leading to their deaths as well. The Tuskegee Study became relatively well known after whistleblower Peter Buxton revealed the experiment to the Washington Star newspaper in 1972. …


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Photo by Bruce Mars on Unsplash

Technically, the Electoral College doesn’t serve all white people; it never has. Its original purpose was to limit the people's opportunity to make rash decisions, leaving the important decision of picking a President to those who knew best. There were no political parties in 1787, so it wasn’t designed to give an edge to one party. Though George Washington was elected unanimously, the presumption was there would be lots of candidates in future elections that couldn’t get enough voted to win outright and that Congress would end up picking the winner. …


How Many of Your Friends and Neighbors Are Secret Members?

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Photo by Sergio Nista on Unsplash

Seven million more people voted for Donald Trump in the year 2020 than in 2016, exceeding seventy million altogether. Many of them didn’t wear MAGA hats or have Trump signs in their yards. They didn’t go to the Trump rallies screaming about locking somebody up. They didn’t demonstrate their support on social media, and they studiously avoided political conversations. They smile in your face, but in the secrecy of the voting booth, they supported Trump.

The Urban Dictionary has a definition for Trumpsters:

A Trumpster is an avid supporter and follower of Donald Trump. He is their light in the darkness. They do not function like your average run of the mill Republican, as they only quote Fox News in their daily debacles with every other political party when it is convenient and in favor of the almighty Trump.


Get The Hell Out of The People’s House!

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Photo by mana5280 on Unsplash

I know throwing tantrums and laying on the floor kicking, and screaming has worked for you in the past. Perhaps a good spanking might have straightened you out then, but there are laws, and you will have Secret Service protection the rest of your life, so I’m just going to try talking to you.

You’ve been fired. I know you haven’t ever worked for somebody you weren’t related to. You aren’t familiar with a system not centered around nepotism, so I’ll need to explain a few things. The job you still hold for the next two months has to be extended every four years by the people that hired you; the American people. A majority of them hired you four years ago; wait, that’s not true. Even though most people voted for Hillary Clinton last year, you were still elected because of the Electoral College, which grants more power to sparsely populated states. It’s too much to cover in a short letter; think of it as Affirmative Action for white people. The point is, Donald. …


Abrams Credited With Helping Register 800,000 New Georgia Voters

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Photo by Element5 on Unsplash

Stacey Abrams didn’t just arrive on the scene in 2018 when she challenged Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp for Governor. Stacey earned 1.9 million votes, more than any other Democrat in Georgia history, but Kemp had 55,000 more votes and became Georgia’s Governor.

Kemp hardly won fair and square. As Secretary of State, an office he continued to hold during the election, he interpreted the rules. He made sure he had every advantage in the race, particularly suppressing minority votes, long a Georgia tradition. Between 2012 and 2016, Kemp removed 1.5 million people from the voter rolls in Georgia for issues like not voting in the previous election or failing an “exact match” on their signatures or issues with punctuation. These policies affected minorities in highly disproportionate numbers. Any challenge to the policies promoted by Kemp was decided by . . . …

About

William Spivey

Writer, poet, wannabe philosopher. I write about politics, history, race, and social justice. Support me at https://ko-fi.com/williamfspivey0680

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