Discriminatory Voter ID Laws & Listener Mail (Police & The Homeless)

Have you ever voted in a federal election? What is the process like? Generally, you go to your polling place, give your name, show your ID, and proceed with voting. Pretty easy. Some however have always had an issue with being asked to show your ID, claiming that doing so violates the voter’s rights act of 1965. In a nutshell, it prevents states from implementing voting requirements specifically designed to exclude any particular group from voting.

In my opinion, asking for an ID is simply an attempt to curtail voter fraud and ensuring the person voting is who they claim to be. However, this new South Dakota law stipulates that the government issued ID must also include your current and correct address. This causes some issues because many Native Americans have a tribal ID which does not have an address on it.

I really don’t have a problem with asking you to prove identity, but being so strict on your ID including your correct address is a bridge too far here. In this case, it really does seem like some voters are intentionally being forced to carry undue hardship to vote. Even the DMV will accept a water bill, apartment lease, or pay-stub to prove residency. After all, that is how they verify the address which is being printed on that Government issued ID, isn’t it? But the same documentation isn’t good enough for people just trying to vote? I get the importance of proving your address in addition to your identity, but in this case it may well be an effort to deny Native Americans their rights as citizens access to vote and to have their voice heard.

That’s in the 2nd segment. In our first segment we read Listener Mail from folks reacting to last week’s show involving homeless folks as well as the Native Wino Roundup. We read letters from Phyllis, Jo Ann, William, and others as we share their opinions and give our own reactions as well.

Click here to download this week’s show directly, and share your comments and thoughts! While you’re sharing, don’t forget to share the show with your friends as well. We always appreciate more listeners and more interaction with the people living in our community. See you again next week!

Cliff and Brandon are registered members of the Puyallup Tribe of Indians and host the Tribal Podcast each and every week with his brother Brandon with all our past episodes available online. They talk about native issues in the news and anything of interest to Native Americans!

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