Deadline For Voting: Don’t Be Left Out

 

This is the last week to register to vote in Oklahoma for the presidential election. Do not assume you are registered. There are state roadblocks erected to inhibit you from voting, but with the price of an effort you can make sure you vote in this historic election.

 

Very last day to register to vote: October 9.
Deadline to request absentee ballot: 5 PM, October 27. You must be registered before you can request the ballot.
Early voting: Thursday, October 29, 8 AM – 6 PM
Friday, October 30, 8 AM – 6 PM
Saturday, October 31, 9 AM – 2 PM

 

If you are already registered to vote you may update your information online at www.ok.gov/elections.Unregistered voters can register by downloading an application found on the state Election Board website. Your application can be mailed to the election board. Voter registration forms also can be found at post offices, libraries, tag agencies and local election boards.

Oklahoma purged nearly 90,000 Oklahoma voters from the rolls and presently they are not eligible to vote this election cycle. Unless they get registered by Friday October 9, 2020. Since 2017 Oklahoma Watch said the state election board purged 291,233 voters off the rolls. Only seven other states have a “use it or lose it” state law meant to remove voters from registration rolls. The state claims it’s to prevent something that rarely happens, voter fraud. The boogeyman this year is something that almost never happens. President Donald J. Trump who has zero experience in voting irregularities has repeatedly claimed people are voting illegally. Trump lost by 3 million votes in 2016 but won the electoral college vote has been angry at the premise he is not a legitimate winner. He theorized and publicly claimed there was massive voting fraud in California where he claimed Mexican nationals were voting by the millions for Hillary Clinton. He claimed other voters were bussed in by the thousands in the Northeast states. He even convened a commission to ferret it out. They found nothing and the FBI director Christopher Wray said there was no voting fraud, but the Russians were intervening on Trump’s behalf in 2016 and in the 2020 election.

You may wonder who is getting purged from the rolls. Of the nearly 300,000 voters (11.7 percent of all voters) booted off the rolls, 46 percent of them were Democrats and 33 percent were Republican. Because of wealth gaps, people of color are more likely to move and would never be contacted by state officials to see if they still wanted to remain on the rolls. People of color may not vote in huge numbers if people who do not look like them are not running for office. State officials will also limit voting times, reduce the number of voting machines, and locate voting stations as far from neighborhoods of black, Hispanic, Native and Asian voters as possible.

Registered Democrat voters have fallen by 24 percent while Republicans have increased by 19 percent. You are not alone if you think this is unfair. In Georgia, the 2018 election has Stacy Abrams running against the secretary of state for Governor. He had ability to remove 700,000 voters and later another 53,000 were flagged for grammatical errors. She lost by 55,000 votes. Ohio also has a use it or lose it law and it was challenged in court. It ended up at the Supreme Court and was upheld by a 5-4 vote. Congress has taken up the effort to outlaw the discriminatory practice. It passed the Democrat controlled House, but the Senate, led by Republicans, said the House bill passed earlier this year will not hear the planned bill. Trump recently called on his followers to act as “poll watchers.” However, it is illegal to designate yourself as a poll watcher as state law states it’s a crime for unauthorized people to remain within 50 feet of a ballot box while the election is in progress. He is clearly trying to intimidate voters exercising their legal right to vote undeterred by partisan interests.

With Obamacare and other issues on the ballot, it has never been more important to vote. The system which for all intents and purposes is reminiscent of Jim Crow laws, can be overcome for the price of an effort and time. However, time is running out. Vote.

Food On The Move Is On The Move

For some Food on the Move is a dear friend during these trying times that includes the base need to eat. Food on the Move is much more than your usual effort to feed the hungry. It is a movement designed to rethink how food is grown and distributed, and includes education on nutrition and health. If that sounds like a lot, that is because it is.

The problem of the dearth of food is great; however there are more far-reaching goals set out by organizers like Taylor Hanson. There are big plans but more about that later. The problem before Food on the Move is that people are hungry today.

Those familiar with Food on the Move look forward to monthly events that bring together participants with music and lots of fun. As part of the on-going effort, the community garden provides a way of teaching participants how to grow and tend a garden. To grow one’s own food is a lost art for many accustomed to city living. It provides nutritious foods, cutting down on cost for Food on the Move and eventually the participants. Because of Covid-19 special care is taken to provide services while creating a safe as possible environment in the delivery of food. To truly solve the huge problem of the food desert here in Tulsa, a grocery store is one of the goals of Food on the Move.

This effort is fortified by an amazing set of partnerships throughout Tulsa of restaurants and corporation, tribes, and the philanthropic community. It takes the best of Tulsa to feed those in urgent need. With the health and economic stress created by the pandemic, the need has never been greater for Tulsa to work together.

This movement is inspired by the great U.S. Ambassador Edward J. Perkins. This great statesman, besides being a visionary in trying to address a growing need, helped end South Africa’s Apartheid government and helped negotiate the release of Nelson Mandela.

For a musical star like Hanson and the dream of Perkins to unite in Tulsa is a true testament to hope and humanity. We congratulate this amazing effort to feed the hungry with dignity and respect.