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What To Do When You're Stopped By Police - The ACLU & Elon James White

What To Do When You're Stopped By Police - The ACLU & Elon James White

Know Anyone Who Thinks Racial Profiling Is Exaggerated? Watch This, And Tell Me When Your Jaw Drops.

This video clearly demonstrates how racist America is as a country and how far we have to go to become a country that is civilized and actually values equal justice. We must not rest until this goal is achieved. I do not want my great grandchildren to live in a country like we have today. I wish for them to live in a country where differences of race and culture are not ignored but valued as a part of what makes America great.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

CBS 46 Atlanta - Georgia photo ID law attacked in court

CBS 46 Atlanta - Georgia photo ID law attacked in courtGeorgia photo ID law attacked in court
Sep 20, 2005, 12:07 PM

ATLANTA (AP) -- A group of voter and civil rights organizations filed suit in federal court Monday seeking to overturn a new state law requiring voters to show photo IDs to vote.

The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in northwest Georgia's Rome on the same day that a commission co-chaired by former President Jimmy Carter, a Georgia native, recommended a national requirement for voters to show photo IDs.

"Photographic identification as a requirement for voting is antidemocratic and prevents people from exercising their fundamental right to vote whether proposed by the General Assembly of the state of Georgia or the Carter-Baker commission," said Daniel Levitas of the American Civil Liberties Union's voting rights project.

The new Georgia law was approved this year by the first Legislature since Reconstruction under complete Republican control and after fierce opposition, including a brief walkout, by Democrats.

It eliminated the use of several previously accepted forms of identification to vote, including Social Security cards, birth certificates and utility bills, and required voters to produce a picture ID such as a driver's license, military identification or state-issued identification card.

The Justice Department, required to review election law changes in Georgia and other states with a history of racial discrimination, gave Georgia the go-ahead to implement the law.

The suit, filed by organizations including Common Cause, the League of Women Voters, the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, contends the law violates provisions of both the state and national Constitutions.

In addition, the suit claims the law effectively imposes an illegal poll tax on those without state-issued ID cards such as a driver's license who now must pay $20 for a five-year state-issued photo ID card or $35 for a 10-year card.

The state says it is issuing free ID cards to those who can't pay the fee, but the suit argues those people still incur transportation expenses in traveling to a site where they can obtain a card.

Dan McLagan, a spokesman for Republican Gov. Sonny Perdue, said the law is intended to deter voter fraud.

"Requiring an ID to vote is common sense and has been instituted in other states," he said. "Under the old system, you could pluck a utility bill out of somebody's trash can and cast a vote."

House Speaker Glenn Richardson, R-Hiram, called the law "a common sense measure" and denounced the suit as "liberal special interests using unconscionable scare tactics to frighten Georgia voters."

Secretary of State Cathy Cox, a Democrat who hopes to challenge Perdue for re-election next year, said she continues to view the new requirement as unnecessary and unwise.

"This provision will make it harder for many Georgians to vote, especially the elderly and those who live in rural areas," she said.

Carter, who chaired an election reform commission along with former Secretary of State James Baker, said in Washington Monday that requiring photo IDs was one of the most important and most difficult of his group's recommendations.

"We addressed this with a great deal of hesitancy," he said, adding that "24 states already require photo ID and 12 others are considering it." Carter said a national approach would prevent states from putting in laws that are discriminatory.

Another former Democratic president, Bill Clinton, has called Georgia's law "just wrong."

"They're cutting lots of folks out of that vote," Clinton said during an appearance in August as a guest on the Rev. Jesse Jackson's syndicated radio show.

Georgia's requirement is unique, said Tim Storey, senior fellow at the National Council of State Legislatures.

He said that of the states that require voters to show identification, only five besides Georgia request photo ID. Those states -- Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, South Carolina and South Dakota -- allow voters without a photo ID to use other forms of identification or sign an affidavit of identity.

Other states that require voters to present IDs are Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia and Washington, Storey said. In some cases, a voter registration card or birth certificate is sufficient.