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Voter Suppression & Gun Control

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Before, during and after the 2020 election many Republicans followed Trump’s lead and lied about widespread voter/election fraud. Trump and his allies had their days in court, losing all but one case. As noted in other essays, Trump’s allies never claimed fraud in court: they were aware of the need for evidence and the penalties for perjury in that context. So, they confined their lies to the public forum. Using their false claims of widespread fraud and pointing to the doubt they created, they contended that they needed to act. The actions they took were, of course, aimed at trying to restrict voting. Since voter/election fraud is not widespread, they had no actual problem to address. Instead, the restrictions that are now being imposed in Georgia are clearly aimed at suppressing black voters. They are not aimed at voter fraud—as brief reflection on most of the restrictions will reveal. As an illustration, consider that the law limits early voting to the hours of 9 to 5 (county registrars can extend this to 7 to 7). How this would reduce fraud is utterly unclear, but it does make it harder for voters with less flexible schedules to vote. As another example, Republicans have acted to increase the lines at polling places predominantly used by minorities while also making it a misdemeanor to provide voters with water. While one could advance the absurd claim that people could buy votes with water, there is no plausible account of how this would counter voter/election fraud. These laws were created in response to Trump’s defeat and since Republicans fear they cannot win the popular vote; they are rebooting Jim Crow and thus at war with democracy and the legitimacy of the state. If the Republican arguments are taken at face value, the following principles would seem to be in operation. The first is that politicians must act to address the concerns of the public (even when these concerns are manufactured by the politicians). The second is that the restriction of a. . .

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News source: A Philosopher's Blog

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