Ex-felon Perry Hopkins has been finally granted rights as a citizen to exercise his franchise.
Hopkins, who is now a community organizer, was convicted for non-violent crimes and spent 19 years in prison. Now he is given the opportunity to vote for the first time ever in his life. With a glee he said, “To have the right to vote now is empowering. I’m stoked.” Hopkins is fortunate to be among the 800,000 citizens that have regained their voting rights.
A growing number of U.S. states are now giving voting rights to ex-convicts. This is somehow promoting racial justice in our communities, as in American jails there are a big percent of black inmates and they are disqualified from exercising their voting rights.
Statistics shows that about half of the 5.8million U.S. citizens, who have been disfranchised, are Blacks convicted of drug crimes. Therefore sometimes black people are not able to make decisions that may change America for the good. Their voices are not heard because they were kept behind bars.
Now that the “War on Drugs” is almost over, it’s time to continue the fight our ancestors fought for during the “Civil Rights Movement” – our voting rights.
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