© 2023 WNIJ and WNIU
Northern Public Radio
801 N 1st St.
DeKalb, IL 60115
Northern Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Perspective: Dismantling Democracy

Photo illustration
Original painting by Greg Maupin

Democracy dies in darkness -- The Washington Post slogan.

However, we are seeing that democracy can also be dismantled in daylight. In the past year since January 6, 2021, legislators across the country have been aggressively attempting to limit voting access. These laws will make it harder to vote and target voters of color.

According to the annual Brennan Center for Justice Report, as of December 7, 2021, lawmakers have enacted at least 34 laws with restrictive provisions in 19 states. Overall, legislators have introduced more than 440 bills with restrictive provisions in 49 states. These laws are not being passed in the darkness. The capital attack took place in broad daylight. The lies about the 2020 election being stolen or not being whispered in cloakrooms. They are being repeated again and again, creating a steady drip slowly eroding the foundational institution which holds up our democracy.

The International Institute for Democracy Now lists the United States as a backsliding democracy. The voter suppression taking place around the nation makes it imperative that Congress pass the freedom to vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, legislation that provides common sense reforms to make voting easier and protect voters of color from racial discrimination in voting. Keeping democracy is the responsibility of all its members. We need to protect our democracy. While we can still recognize what is a true democracy.

I am Dan Kenny, and this is my perspective.

Dan Kenney is a retired elementary school teacher and the founder of DeKalb County Community Gardens. He's also a published poet and writer.