‘We’re going to lead this’ a call for Black women in Florida to claim

3 yıl önce
Democrats face a tough fight to win back the White House in November, and with anti-racism protests raging nationwide, the coronavirus pandemic threatens the voting rights and turnout of their most powerful voting block: Black Americans. While they are 14% of the population, African Americans make up a third of all Covid-19 cases. In Florida, a recent rise threatens turnout as Black people make up 13% of eligible voters. The state already ranks second in the nation in income inequality. But the pandemic, and recession that followed, worsened existing economic and healthcare disparities between white Americans, and Black communities. With one in 1,000 Black Americans having died of the virus, progressives such as Angie Nixon are rallying voters ahead of the 2020 presidential election. Running uncontested, she’s the next state representative for Florida’s 14th congressional district representing Jacksonville and its outer suburbs.“I think it’s really important that we work on legislation that addresses systemic racism and that is not just Band-Aids,” she said. “I’m pregnant. Yes, I have a degree. I have a good-paying job and I have healthcare, but I’m still concerned that if I go into the hospital, will I be listened to?”As cases surged in Jacksonville, Nixon’s canvassing evolved into community wellness checks. Shortly after, she contracted the virus while pregnant before transmitting it to her mother. She said her “most mentally taxing experience” is a wake-up call for Democrats to get aggressive in facing the issues affecting their most loyal voting bloc.“I don’t want [my daughters] to continue to fight for the same things that my mom and my grandmother had to fight for,” she said. “We’ve been the ones that have been turning out for the longest and we are going to lead this movement,” she said. Nixon is part of a record number of Black women and women of color to run for office across the country. While she called on more to claim their political power and demand “a seat at the table”, she acknowledged that not all Black voters move left.“[Black Americans are] not a monolithic people and we’re never going to get anything done if we come in just pushing this hardcore left agenda,” she said. While the outbreak forced Republicans to move their national convention from Jacksonville to the White House lawn, the party still aimed to lure disaffected Black voters. Black conservative speakers predicted “the days of blindly supporting the Democrats are coming to an end”, and some moderates and conservatives look to alternatives to Democrats and Republicans.“Black women have definitely been a strong voice in voting, but what has that done for us?” one Black independent voter from Jacksonville told the Guardian. Unmotivated by both candidates, she’s exercising her right not to vote at all.“It is very American to choose not to exercise your right to vote,” she said, asking not to be identified due to backlash. “It is also very American to choose which side