Former President Obama told the nation that every single American can both protest and vote, and that is a message that scares Trump.
Obama expressed hope and optimism that the nation will use this moment to emerge stronger and better, and later added:
Most of the reforms needed to prevent the type of violence and injustices that we’ve seen take place at the local level. Reform has to take place in more than 19,000 MUNIC municipalities. More than 18,000 enforcement jurisdictions and so as activists and everyday citizens raise their voices, we need to be clear about where change is going to happen and how we can bring about that change.
It is mayors and county executors that appoint most police chiefs and negotiate collective bargaining agreements with police unions and that determines police practices in local communities. It’s district and states attorneys that decide typically whether or not to investigate and charge those involved in police misconduct and those are all elected positions and in some places are review boards with the power to monitor conduct.
The bottom line is I’ve been hearing a little bit of chatter on the internet about voting versus protests. Politics and participation versus civil disobedience yens and direct action. This is not an either/or. This is a both/and. To bring about real change, we both have to highlight a problem and make power uncomfortable, but we have to transform that into practical solutions to laws that can be implemented and we can monitor and make sure we’re following up on them.
The message that terrifies Trump and the Republicans is that voting is the path to change. If you want to pass laws to end systemic racism, vote for candidates that will do that, and just as importantly vote against those who are keeping the status quo in place and blocking change.
Barack Obama provided a general roadmap to change. It is up to the American people to both protest, and then vote for the change they are advocating for in November.
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Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association
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