Posted by Deborah Goonan
Originally published on Neighbors at War
One Person One Vote
Ward Lucas August 4, 2015
Our frequent guest blogger, Deborah Goonan, alerted me to an excellent documentary which could ultimately go straight to the heart of the fight against the HOA disease. It’s produced by the Annenberg Foundation and reviews two of the most important U.S. Supreme Court decisions of the 20th Century, Baker v. Carr and Reynolds v. Simms, which were both decided in the early 60s.
The Court essentially ruled that the 14th Amendment, enacted 3 years after the civil war, should have made all citizens equal. But as the decades rolled on it became obvious that because of unequal state apportionment of legislative districts, people in rural counties had much more voting power than high density cities. The court essentially ruled that equal rights means equal voting power. It overturned 150 years of precedence and all legislatures had to reapportion their states so a roughly equal number of people resided in each voting district. There’s been frequent gerrymandering, of course, but that’s a story for another time.
There was another major milestone that happened about that same time. The country decided that blacks had just as much right to vote as whites. Congress enacted and the President signed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and many southern laws which restricted black voting rights were overturned.
Preview…read the blog here
Watch the Annenberg Foundation documentary, One Person, One Vote (26 min.)