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The Grandfather Clause

The Grandfather Clause

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Published by Mick McKenzie
The term “grandfather in" comes from laws passed that were designed to prevent blacks from voting even after 15th Amendment was passed.
The term “grandfather in" comes from laws passed that were designed to prevent blacks from voting even after 15th Amendment was passed.

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Mick McKenzie on Aug 26, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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³Grandfather Clause´
By: Mick McKenzie / Mick553I recently watched a movie called ³Posse´ with Mario Van Peebles and all in all, it was a prettygood movie. It was about a group of mostly black cowboys in the late 1800¶s ³taking care´ of the bad guys who they felt had wronged them. They were kind of bad guys too, but at least theywere likable. One of the themes running through the movie was ³Education Makes You Free.´ Ithought that was kind of interesting and found it to be especially relevant today.Just before the credits started to roll at the end of the movie, it made note of a ³
 grandfather clause
´ that was used in the 1800¶s to prevent blacks from voting. I had heard the term before inreference to ³
´ something in to exempt it from the enforcement of a new law,code or custom, but did not know where the term itself came from. I did a little research and wassurprised to learn that the ³
 grandfather clause´
term came from the connecting of blacks to their grandfathers in order to prevent them from voting. In other words, if your grandfather was aslave and could not vote, then you could not vote. Politicians are very creative.It appears that the
³Grandfather Clause´
came about as a result of the U.S. Congress ratifyingthe Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution on February 3, 1870, which prohibited Federal andState Governments of the United States from denying any citizen the right to vote based on their race or color. It was also interesting to learn that not one single Democrat in Congress voted to pass this amendment. After the passage of the Fifteenth Amendment, the Democrats immediatelystarted looking for ways to again restrict blacks from voting. It didn¶t take long before the socalled ³party of the people´ came up with a scheme they called the ³grandfather clause,´ whichwere laws passed from 1890 to 1910 in many Southern States to again prevent blacks fromvoting.Even after the U.S. Supreme Court found enactments of the ³
 grandfather clause
´unconstitutional, most blacks were still unable to vote in the United States. In fact, things didn¶treally change much until Congress passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which finally providedall blacks with the federal protection they needed to not only register to vote, but also the protection they needed to have access to the polls in order to vote. Again without getting therecognition they deserved, Republicans played a major role in getting this Voting Rights Act passed, even with many Democrats opposing it.It is hard to understand why so many blacks continue to vote for Democrats today when it isclear that it has always been the Republican Party that has done so much more for their advancement in America. Thankfully, there are many people and organizations out there that areworking to help change things by educating people and working to help unite Americans as one.The NAACPC is one such organization that, along with its founders, are not only working hardto put an end to identity politics in America forever, but are also working to help create a color  blind society in America as well. It is a fairly new organization that is already making a bigimpact on the American landscape by spreading the truth about black history in America.

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