Georgia's New Voter Suppression Measures Upsetting MLK, John Lewis, and C.T. Vivian's Children

Georgia’s New Voter Suppression Measures Upsetting MLK, John Lewis, and C.T. Vivian’s Children

Bernice King [Instagram]

Georgia’s newest voter suppression law, Bill 531, which requires voters to have convincing identification for absentee ballots, has the children of famed civil rights leaders upset.


On Monday, in response to the controversial bill, Bernice A. King, the daughter of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., John-Miles Lewis, son of the late Georgia Rep. John Lewis, and Al Vivian, son of Rev. Cordy Tindell “C.T.” Vivian collectively criticized it for regressing Black people’s voting rights, CNN reported.

“Rather than sowing seeds to provide democracy the greatest chance to grow today and prevail tomorrow, legislators are attempting to transport us back to the shameful period of American history when mass voter suppression for communities of color was the law of the land,” a signed letter by the trio read.

“The new voter suppression laws are a perversion of truth. Our democracy will be destroyed if we use blunt instruments to appease falsehoods,” they continued.

The Republican-leaning house bill got passed 97-72, and then was passed in the state’s Republican-led state. The bill was signed by Gov. Brian Kemp, a supporter of former President Donald Trump. Some Democratic Reps believe the sudden change in voting policies is a response to Trump’s loss in the state, according to theGrio.

The bill already has three lawsuits from civil rights and voting rights group alike, the latest suit was filed on Tuesday: Sixth District of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, Georgia Muslim Voter Project, Women Watch Afrika, Latino Community Fund Georgia, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

“[Bill 531 makes it difficult to vote], particularly voters of color, new citizens, and religious communities,” the groups said in a statement.

In related news regarding voting suppression, Georgia NAACP, Georgia Coalition for the People’s Agenda, League of Women Voters of Georgia, GALEO Latino Community Development Fund, Common Cause, and the Lower Muskogee Creek Tribe filed a lawsuit against SB 202, a bill that enables Republican-dominated state officials to seize the powers of county election boards, allowing Republicans to disqualify voters in Democratic-leaning areas, Vox Media reported.