The Soul of America: Revisiting 1962
Voting (1962 vs. 2020)
They talked about how it was our right to vote. . . . I never heard, until 1962, that Black people could register to vote. — Fannie Lou Hamer on attending a SNNC meeting
Voter suppression is nothing new in the United States
California passes the 15th Amendment 93-years after approval by the U.S. Congress. Black church’s burn serving as voter registration centers. Politicians use redistricting to suppress black votes. Black citizens are told to vote at their own risk by U.S. Justice Department.
1959 – 1962 Tennessee Tent City Movement
In the clip below, in overwhelmingly Black populated Fayette County Tennessee, voting restrictions kept many Black residents disenfranchised. Resident Mary Williams recounts when Blacks began to register to vote, the backlash that ensued: White landowners evicted Black sharecroppers from their homes and businesses denied them the basic necessities, such as gas and food, to survive. With no where to go, evicted families erected tents on land owned by the few Black farmers in the area which became known as the 4-year long, Tennessee Tent City Movement.
Read about Mary Williams’ and other’s stories—from civil rights struggles to struggles in America’s judicial system—in the 18-page spread of The Soul of America: Revisiting 1962 issue where C2Change compares the year 1962 to 2020 in its latest digital magazine at https://issuu.com/c2changemagazine/docs/c2change_magazine_volume_two-issue_one_2021/s/12153005