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Georgia on My Mind… By Mark Lampkin

We are now in the throes of what must feel like a “never-ending” Groundhog Day. It was just two years ago when we had a similar vote in the State of Georgia that would determine the balance of power in Congress for incoming President Joe Biden. And the people of Georgia stepped up, showed out and Kicked butt.

New Senator Jon Ossoff was elected to a full term of six years to replace David Perdue, and Raphael Warnock defeated Kelly Loeffler for the remaining two years of her term. What is so alarming is that both outgoing Georgia Senators are multi-millionaires. Both had been under investigation for various corruption charges that should have them, in a just society, behind bars.

Soon after that loss by the Republican Party, they began plotting ways in which to defeat Senator Warnock, who benefitted from the outpouring of support and VOTING by Black men and women. Not surprisingly, the GOP knew that the best way to defeat a Strong Black Man is by using the age-old trick of divide and conquer.

Thus, they drafted former football player Herschel Walker to move from Texas, or more accurately, list his party affiliation as a Georgia resident. He could now be promoted and exploited in order to split the Black vote in the State.

This brings to mind a quote by George Orwell, the author of the acclaimed book 1984; “In our age, there is no such thing as ‘keeping out of politics.’ All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia.”

To believe that any rational-thinking person would vote for someone as ill-prepared, ignorant of real issues in Georgia, and devoid of decency as Herschel Walker gives the above quote validity.

To honestly think that he could serve the citizens of Georgia better than Sen. Warnock, who in just two short years has been busy crafting bills that have already benefitted Georgians…makes my head spin. But, then again, it is Georgia. A state where white people voted by larger numbers FOR Walker in the 2022 November mid-terms than they did for the Republican candidates in the 2020 general election.

I guess that deep-seated racism we all had hoped was behind us is still living and voting among us today.

Which brings us to this time in our Nation’s History – again.

And fortunately, even THANKFULLY – The people of Georgia voted to send Rev. Raphael Warnock back to the Senate for a full six-year term. Even with all the measures that the Republican Party put forth to prevent citizens from voting…They did it!

It is now imperative that the Democratic Party and the Biden administration get some things done…and let the People KNOW! Stop playing checkers when the GOP is always playing chess. They are even today trying to figure out whom they will move into position to beat the “other” Georgia Senator who will be up for re-election in 2026, Jon Ossoff.

If there are lessons to take away from what we have just witnessed the past 24 months in Georgia, I believe it is that when people who have been marginalized for decades can be shown the true value of their participation with their votes, and how it MATTERS, then the shifting of Power will continue to swing towards the 99%’ers.

Maybe the NAACP chapters of each state, along with the groups that support the Asian, Latino and LGBTQ communities, are ready to build strong and equitable coalitions. Every advance made by Black Americans the past 60 years has also caused the boats to rise for every disenfranchised group in America. Because, truth be told, we all know that we share a common foe. They have come out from under their hoods and robes to show us that they want nothing to do with equality or progress that does not include them being in control.

In a week that saw former President Trump say that he’s for throwing out the U.S. Constitution because he lost in 2020 tells us we are in a fight for Democracy and our very existence.

To quote the esteemed author and Civil-rights activist James Baldwin, who knew firsthand the issues we faced then, and now, stated: “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”

Let’s face this new time in US history with all that WE bring to the moment.