Without aggressive and un-Constitutional restrictions on minority voting, these states could quickly turn into progressive strongholds. The map also illustrates the presence of white enclaves within these increasingly minority states.
Their plan for the future is harsh, but simple: preserve these enclaves, limit minority representation through gerrymandering, and use other techniques -- including "caging," voter ID laws, and gerrymandering -- to limit minority participation in democracy.
They're well organized, well funded, and antagonistic to the democratic process. That doesn't mean they can't be defeated. But it will take hard work.
A new coalition has created a website called "Restore Voting Rights." The National "Right to Vote" Act, announced today by Representatives Marc Pocan and Keith Ellison, would restore some of these lost rights.
The Voting Rights Act was passed, and has three times been renewed, with bipartisan support. Congress can prove that wasn't hypocrisy, but only by supporting a new and meaningful voting rights act.
More broadly, we'll need a two-step program of education and activism. First we must understand what they're doing and inform others about it. Then we must resist the Coup's forces through a vigorous campaign against its elected officials and its laws. The form and nature of that campaign should be the subject of vigorous debate. But the need for it should be self-evident.
There's bitter symbolism in this week's ruling. Dr. King was present when Lyndon Johnson signed the Voting Rights Act. Our response to this ruling will tell us -- and history -- whether his movement and values are still present and active in our society today. Our times are strikingly similar to Dr. King's, as we face a digital revolution, a weapons revolution powered by drones and other killing machines, and a global revolution for democratic rights.
This ruling is a clear defeat. But if we use it as a call to re-engage in the struggle for our rights, it can also contain the seeds of victory.
"A great revolution is taking place in the world today ... a technological revolution, with the impact of automation and cybernation ... a revolution in weaponry, with the emergence of atomic and nuclear weapons of warfare; (and) a human rights revolution, with the freedom explosion that is taking place all over the world." -- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.