By Loribeth Reynolds
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the march from Selma, to Montgomery, Alabama.
The march was a part of a peaceful civil rights protest, and later led to the passage of the voting rights act of 1965.
Many great Americans fought for their right to vote, not only for themselves, but for generations to come. It’s crazy to think that with one stroke of a pen, those rights have been taken away from many Kansans.
A strict voter ID law was adopted by Kansas in 2011, which blocks some people from voting.
Kansas Secretary of the State Kris Kobach, a conservative extremist, designed this suppressive law.
It requires registered voters to present a photo ID at the polls. Kobach is so threatened by a democratic vote, he has gone to measures beyond what should be constitutionally allowed. He hides behind a false fear of voter fraud, when in fact you have more chances of being struck by lightning than seeing a case of voter fraud in your lifetime.
In order to get a photo ID in Kansas, you must provide proof of lawful presence in the U.S., proof of identity, proof of Kansas residency, a social security number, and last but certainly not least, a payment.
This may sound easy to some people, but it discriminates against many.
The fact that you have to pay anything to vote would make our forefathers roll over in their graves.
The march that started in Selma was all about standing up for every American’s inalienable rights.
For instance, a person born at home, who is elderly and never had a driver’s license, wouldn’t be able to vote.
An 18-year-old who has been a Kansan since birth but has no photo ID, cannot vote. A poor minority person who lacks a car and money to get a photo ID can’t vote.
Furthermore, this law discourages new voters because of all the hurdles one must jump just to obtain a photo ID.
It seems that the voter ID law is platform on which the GOP stands, to see what else they can manipulate in their favor.
For example, the bill was introduced by Rep. Virgil Peck, R-Tyro — a man who seems ignorant of First Amendment rights.
Peck favors barring college professors from using their credentials when authoring columns for Kansas newspapers.
These Kansas leaders are stepping on our rights.
Remember that, next time you step up to the polls — if you’re allowed.