The Smiths’ 2017 Record Store Day 7-inch release came with a not-so-secret message to the U.S. inscribed on the record’s A-side: “Trump Will Kill America.” While I can’t say enough great things about this awesome stunt, it is a rather depressing reminder that this becomes truer every goddamned day. The 7-inch itself is a mix of two previously unreleased demos for “The Boy With the Thorn In His Side” and the flipside features “Rubber Ring” recorded at Drone Studios in Chorlton where the band recorded a bunch of demos back in the 80s. Actor Albert Finney, seen in the “Angry Young Man” phase of his long career, is pictured on the cover.
The news was widely spread across social media by Record Store Day shoppers who discovered the etching on the run-out groove on the A-side and deservingly dragged Donnie on his favorite communication vehicle, Twitter. In case you missed all of that, I’ve included a few posts from Smiths’ fans showing off their records at the expense of our current “president.”
The etching on The Smiths’ 2017 Record Store Day 7-inch release.
June 15th, 1983 was just another blurry day in Mötley-land. The up n’ coming sleaze-stars of the Crüe were just about finished recording their breakthrough sophomore album Shout at the Devil and were doing what they did best: drugs. Lots and lots of drugs. After bassist Nikki Sixx and drummer Tommy Lee spent the afternoon snorting coke off a friend’s grand piano and banging a bunch of groupies in a hot tub, Sixx decides to hop into his Porsche—naked, of course—and speed over to ex-Runaway Lita Ford’s house. He never made it. Barreling down the city streets at excess of 90 miles per hour, Sixx hit a telephone pole and totaled his car. He was discovered by some helpful passersby, who pulled his limp body from the wreckage and got him to a hospital. Amazingly, his only major damage was a separated shoulder, and he recovered quickly enough to hit the road for the first leg of the lengthy Shout world tour.
Matthew Trippe…or Nikki Sixx? You decide!
That’s what “they” want you to think, anyway. But that’s not the way Matthew John Trippe remembered it at all…
Trippe was an alcoholic teenage Satanist when he ran into Crüe guitarist Mick Mars at the Troubadour on the Sunset Strip in the spring of ‘83. Mötley, according to Trippe, was looking for a Nikki Sixx clone to cover while the real Sixx was in the hospital recovering from his car crash. Despite the fact that Trippe didn’t really look like Nikki at all and couldn’t play the bass and didn’t even know their songs, he joined the band, toured the world, wrote and recorded half of the Theater of Pain record, and was left high and dry a year later when he was arrested for robbing a magazine stand in Florida for beer money and the now-mended Nikki Sixx rejoined the band.
If this sounds fucking insane to you, well, it seemed that way to the courts too, who tossed out his suit against Mötley Crüe manager Doc Mcghee in 1988.
The “best” proof of the “fake” Nikki Sixx.
Here’s the thing, though. Trippe—who died in 2014 still defiantly telling the world he was the 80s Nikki Sixx—was a boozy, druggy liar, for sure. But so was everybody else in that organization back then. There are enough kinda-sortas to the story (Kerrang! magazine even published a five-page article filled with puzzling evidence) to keep conspiracy theorists going probably forever. And here’s the thing: I saw Vince Neil perform in Oklahoma (don’t ask) in 2007. He did all Mötley Crüe songs, of course, moldy oldies like “Girls, Girls, Girls” and “Live Wire,” but he would only sing the choruses. He would just mumble through the verses. So either this bloated dummy onstage was so wine-soaked at that point that he didn’t even know the words to the songs he’s been singing for thirty years, or they just got a Vince Neil doppelgänger for the gig who didn’t do his homework.
The revolution started on February 17, 1913, when four thousand members of the American public were confronted by the work of a group of European artists exhibited at the 69th Regiment Armory on Lexington Avenue, New York. The shock of this cultural invasion, called the Armory Show, claimed many. Some laughed. Some fumed. Some had an attack of the vapors. There were even those who felt their senses had (somehow) been physically assaulted by the canvases painted by artists like Vincent Van Gogh, Paul Cezanne, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso and in particular Marcel Duchamp whose Nude Descending a Staircase No. 2 proved to be the most sensational exhibit on display. This, many critics and members of the public claimed, was not art, it was mere childlike daubing. It was anarchy.
When the exhibition arrived in Chicago, the Illinois Legislative Investigators probed “the Moral Tone of the Much Touted Art” over its “many indecent canvasses and sculptures.” When a third city Boston capitulated to the exhibition later that year, Modernism had arrived in America and nothing would ever be the same.
Press respond to the Armory Show from 1913.
While some welcomed this cultural shift, there were many who clung to the security of the old order of classical art. In 1913, writer Mary Chase Mills Lyall (1879-1963) and illustrator Earl Harvey Lyall (1877-1932) produced an ABC book—intended for both adults and children—which poked fun at this strange new art. Their book The Cubies featured three ultra-modern, triangular figures of indeterminate sex who “moon over anything Cubist and scorn objectivity.” They owed their “incubation” to the Association of American Painters and Sculptors who had organized the Armory Show. Together these three characters lead the reader through their modernist manifesto of art:
A is for Art in the Cubies’ domain–
(Not the Art of the Ancients, brand-new are the Cubies.)
Archipenko’s their guide, Anatomics their bane;
They’re the joy of the mad, the despair of the sane,
(With their emerald hair and their eyes red as rubies.)
—A is for Art in the Cubies’ domain.
B is for beauty as Brancusi viewed it. C is for “Color Cubistic” where artists are advised to throw paint on a canvas and then exhibit it. D is for Duchamp “the Deep-Dyed Deceiver.” And so on and so on.
Their intention was to belittle and to deride the pernicious influence of this “shock of the new.” What happened next to this husband and wife team is unimportant. It was how America’s artists responded to the challenge set by the Armory Show that mattered. Artists responded not with a hankering for the past but with radical imagination and innovation which placed the United States at the center of Modern Art for the next sixty years.
We don’t have to time travel like Dr. Sam Beckett to find out just how terrible things were in the past. No, we’ve got the Internet to do that for us.
If you’ve ever wondered how easy sexism, misogyny and violence is passed on generation to generation then look no further than this brutal gallery featuring some of the world’s favorite cartoon characters and comic book superheroes spanking women. Their actions are supposed to be funny. Their actions are supposed to be normal. It’s even encouraged by their fellow comic strip characters and worse accepted as a suitable punishment by the women being hit.
Between the 1940s and 1970s, spanking in comic books appeared to be mandatory. Virtually every comic book hero from Batman, Daredevil, the Phantom, Li’l Abner and Superman indulged in this kind of abuse. Let’s be clear Lois Lane would have dumped Clark Kent for his psychotic penchant for domestic abuse. Bruce Wayne would have been put on at least on community service for his cosplay sadism. Then there were all the dimwits in the newspaper “Funnies” who only reinforced the worst kind of behavior.
The spanking may have stopped but the sexism is still very much a part of today’s comic books as can be seen by the cover of Spider-Woman #1 or through the Hawkeye Intiative. No doubt Dr. Beckett is out there right now trying to fix that too….
It’s astonishing me how punching Nazis has become a controversial discussion since that wonderful, WONDERFUL footage of fucking evil shitstain and actual neo-Nazi Richard Spencer getting decked by what looks like a Black Bloc protestor went all-consumingly viral over the weekend. I know you’ve seen it so I’m not even going to link it here. It’s been set to music, captioned, and shared on social media in some form or another probably more times than the USA has people.
And there are some milquetoast pearl-clutchers who imagine themselves to be on the left who deplore the assault committed against this actual genocide fanboy…
What idiots and enablers they are! You punch Nazis, because the only language they understand is the language of violence and punishment. There is no “let’s discuss this” with a Nazi. That implies that Nazism is just another point of view that can be discussed.
It’s not. It’s NAZISM.
Nazism is being normalized now, and that’s terrifying. When he got punched, Spencer was being interviewed for television as though white supremacism was just another viewpoint in the political landscape. It’s not. It doesn’t matter how sophisticated his messaging is and it doesn’t matter if he hides behind the euphemistic “Alt-Right” tag (a label he invented in an attempt to make palatable the fact that he’s a neo-Nazi). You don’t normalize a Nazi. And when you deplore his spectacularly awesome and life-affirming assault and say we should have a discussion about his views, YOU’RE contributing to the normalization of Nazis at a time when society needs to be punching them. Love doesn’t fix these people. Neither does punching, but the point isn’t fixing them, the point is showing them they’re vulnerable and robbing them of their newfound boldness in expressing their psychopathic genocidal wills to power. The point is to steal their fearlessness; the alternative is they steal your life. Understood?
If your dad or grandpa went overseas to kill Nazis, relax, it’s OK for you to punch one. If Nazis confined, enslaved, or exterminated any of your family members, it should go without saying that you can punch a Nazi and that’s just fine. Hell, if you went to see Captain America: The First Avenger and cheered when Red Skull’s body burned up in the Tesseract (oh, sorry, spoiler alert, Captain America wins in his own movie), even that qualifies you as a fully licensed puncher of Nazi scum.
To those who would that say that since I’m hand-waving violence I’m no better than they are, fuck you, I’m SO MUCH better than they are. I’m saying society must immediately put the fear into the growing white supremacist movement (and you don’t even have to literally punch anyone to do that). You, conversely, are essentially talking about appeasing Hitler. Fucking prioritize. Even if you don’t want to commit to taking that swing, merely approving of punching them helps more than hand-wringing over how we mustn’t “dehumanize” them. They debased their own humanity when they became full-time philosophical and political advocates of institutionalized and systemic bigotry.
I’d like to share the perspective of Warren Ellis here—the British author, not Nick Cave’s violin player, though I’ll bet he doesn’t much care for Nazis either:
All I can tell you is, from my perspective as an old English socialist and cultural liberal who is probably way to the woolly left from most of you and actually has a medal for services to free speech — yes, it is always correct to punch Nazis. They lost the right to not be punched in the face when they started spouting genocidal ideologies that in living memory killed millions upon millions of people. And anyone who stands up and respectfully applauds their perfect right to say these things should probably also be punched, because they are clearly surplus to human requirements. Nazis do not need a hug. Nazis do not need to be indulged. Their world doesn’t get better until you’ve been removed from it. Your false equivalences mean nothing. Their agenda is always, always, extermination. Nazis need a punch in the face.
Which brings us to “Nazis Gettin’ Punched.” It’s a single-purpose Tumblr page that’s exactly what it says on the box. “A satisfying repository of images, still or in-motion, actual or fictional, featuring those who espouse Nazi ideology being struck by mighty but non-lethal blows.” Plenty of Captain America and other comics panels are to be found there, along with stills and clips from TV and film (including Raiders of the Lost Ark, unsurprisingly), and even one marvelous real-life example, depicting righteous takedowns of the actual worst people in the history of Western Civilization. Because if there’s one thing you’d goddamn think sensible people could all agree on: wasting pigs is radical, man.
“April 13, 1985, Växjö, Sweden. Danuta Danielsson, 38, the daughter of a concentration camp survivor, strikes a marching Neo-Nazi with her handbag. This photo was taken by Hans Runesson, and was named “Picture of the Century” by the Photographic Historical Society of Sweden.”
More Nazis getting what’s coming to them, after the jump…
A mannequin peering out of a ‘Lunatic Box’ on display at the Glore Psychiatric Museum in Saint Joseph, Missouri.
In 1874 the state of Missouri opened the “State Hospital for the Insane #2” more commonly referred to as the “Lunatic Asylum #2.” The asylum prided itself as the kind of institution that took on the “noble work” of “reviving hope in the human heart and dispelling the portentous clouds that penetrate the intellects of minds diseased.” While this claim does sound noble, the methods that were used to “penetrate” the minds of the patients who found themselves in one of the institution’s 25 beds were often medieval at best. At their worst the treatments administered by the staff were variations of what would be considered torture and were often experimental in nature—usually causing more harm than good.
The asylum would fill all of its available beds. In 1899 the institution changed its name to the far more friendly sounding St. Joseph State Hospital. Five decades later over 3,000 patients had passed through the hospital including dangerous criminals who had long taken leave of their mental faculties. These criminally insane people walked the halls alongside of residents who were struggling with depression. The hospital would continue to operate for 127 years. In 1967 a long-time employee of the Missouri Department of Mental Health, George Glore opened a museum in one of St. Joseph’s many wards. Glore’s on-site museum housed various mental health related artifacts that had been used over the centuries to treat patients with mental health problems, such as the horrific sounding “Lunatic Box” which was routinely used to treat patients that could not be easily controlled and were prone to act out, perhaps violently. The box, which strongly resembled a fucking coffin of all things, would house the patient in complete darkness in a standing position for hours. Patients were not even allowed to leave the box to go to the bathroom, leaving them to do their business in the box until a member of the staff felt that they had reached the appropriate level of zen.
In 1997 what is now known as the Glore Psychiatric Museum moved to a large, three-story building in order to provide enough room for its vast array of oddities. Below you’ll find many images from exhibits on display at the Glore including some haunting artwork done by patients who resided at St. Joseph’s during its century-plus existence. If you’re planning on visiting Saint Joseph, Missouri anytime soon the museum is open Monday to Sunday and kids get in FREE. Yikes.
A long shot of the ‘Lunatic Box’ which was used during the 18th and 19th century.
A display containing 110,000 cigarette boxes that were collected by a resident of the St. Joseph State Hospital.
The cover of the 1960 book ‘Transvestism Today: The Phenomenon of Men Who Dress Like Women.’
According to a note on the back cover of the 1960 book Transvestism Today: The Phenomenon of Men Who Dress Like Women, viewing the book was only for the eyes of those affiliated with the medical community, psychoanalysts or students currently pursuing degrees in “psychology or social studies.” Written by the rather prolific Dr. Edward Podolsky and noted “hack” Carlson Wade, the duo authored many books together on sexuality and psychology. Including The Modern Sex Manual in 1942 which divulged some rather stunning revelations such as the “abnormal” act of masturbation can “dull” the feeling of intercourse:
Masturbation, if it has been indulged in excessively before marriage maybe be a cause of lack of orgasm during coitus. In women, masturbation brings into play abnormal channels of nerve stimulation, and as these are not stimulated during the normal act, the woman fails to achieve and orgasm. In most cases if masturbation is dropped completely and normal sexual activity substituted for it, the normal channels of nerve stimulation will in time bring about a normal enjoyment of the act.
It seems all that is missing from the good doctor’s assessment is that you might also go blind while pleasuring yourself. Podolsky and Wade’s Transvestism Today book is chock full of photographs of famous drag queens such as the alluring Parisian “Coccinelle” (born Jacques Charles Dufresnoy). Coccinelle was notable for many reasons including being the roommate of Salvador Dali muse Amanda Lear and the first French-born man to undergo sexual reassignment surgery which was performed in Casablanca in 1958.
When it comes to Wade’s contributions to the literary world, in addition to to his many collaborations with Dr. Podolsky (including six manuals from 1963 referred to as their “Epic Sexual Behavior Series”) he is also responsible for a series of sleazy pulp paperbacks such as a book on Coccinelle published in 1963 titled She-Male: The Sex-Reversal True Life Story of COCCINELLE. There was also a claim made by Bob Blackburn, the executor of Ed Wood’s estate (on behalf of his second wife Kathy O’Hara) that Wood was actually Carlson Wade and had written the 1958 book by Wade Conquering Goddess. And just because I love to throw our DM readers a good old-fashioned curveball, Wade also penned loads of trash under the name of “Ken Worthy” among other pseudonyms. But as I often do, I digress. Why don’t we take a look at the table of contents from Worthy/Wade/not-Wood 1967 book The Queer Path, shall we?:
The Table of Contents from Wade Carlson’s book ‘The Queer Path,’ 1967.
Moving on, here’s more anti-gay rantings from Worthy/Wade as published in 1965’s The New Homosexual Revolution lest you have any doubt of the author’s feelings about the gay community of the 1960s:
As the ranks of the homosexual is constantly swelling by greater and greater acceptance of this condition as an ‘illness,’ the ranks of the male prostitute is also swelled.
I’ve included images of both pages from both authors’ books as well as other salacious imagery that I’m sure will make you wonder if Dr. Podolsky perhaps got his degree out of a box of Cracker Jacks.
A page from ‘Transvestism Today: The Phenomenon of Men Who Dress Like Women.’
An illustration accompanying Carlson Wade’s article on the ‘strange erotic impulse’ of ‘Vampirism.’
A 27-year-old David Duke (the then Grand Dragon of the KKK) helping to keep the Mexican border safe, 1977.
On October 27th, 1977, David Duke the then 27-year-old Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan held a press conference to announce that the members of the KKK would start independently patrolling the Mexican border in Southern California, New Mexico, Texas and Arizona. Duke dubbed his plan the “Klan Border Watch.”
According to Duke, Klan members would be disbursed throughout the 2000 mile border with 230 assigned to monitor and detain illegal aliens attempting to cross the Mexico/California border, 150 in Texas, 75 in New Mexico and a scant few in Arizona. During the first night of the KKK’s unofficial duties as border watch dogs actual Border Patrol agents said they didn’t see a single white hood. According to others there were apparently at least ten Klan members and six vehicles with cheap signs taped to the doors that read “Klan Border Watch” (classy!) sighted along the California/Mexico border. Much like you-know-who (whose father might have been a Klan sympathizer in his youth), Duke made statements to the media saying that he had the “full support of the American people” when it came to the Klan’s efforts to block Mexican immigrants from entering the country illegally and “taking jobs away” from American citizens.
The U.S. Border Patrol refused to work with the Klan, and their independent actions were denounced by government officials and minority activists. The rejection of the Klan’s plans to patrol the border led to a large coalition of anti-Klan activists protesting the Klan’s unwanted help along the border in San Diego. The U.S. Ambassador to Mexico at the time, Patrick Lucey, also released a strong statement condemning the Klan’s actions saying that in “no way would the Klan be allowed to patrol the border.”
Despite all the push back and assurance from government officials and the Border Patrol itself, Duke continued to spin yarns about how he had met with members of the Justice Department as well as other federal agencies insinuating that he had somehow received authorization for the klansmen to add “border patrol agent” to their resumes along with cross burning and you know, good old-fashioned lynching. Of course all of this was just a way for the attention-hungry Duke to shine a spotlight on himself and the Klan in an effort to somehow convince the general public that the KKK was trying to protect them from job-stealing illegal immigrants. Does any of this sound familiar to you?
If you perhaps think that over the decades the Klan has changed their perspective on how to secure our borders, you’d be correct. In 2014 during an television interview two KKK members in North Carolina dressed in their best white sheets and hoods advocated for shooting Mexican children (or “popping” them off) as they attempted to cross the border then leaving their corpses behind to rot in order to reinforce how “serious” they were about “immigration.”
If you voted for a candidate that the “modern” version of David Duke and the KKK vividly supported and endorsed during the election, that’s your burning cross to bear. After all, you could have taken a look at who all the bigots and white nationalists were going for and in the privacy of the ballot box voted for someone else instead. But you didn’t, did you?
And sure, sure I know the president-elect eventually denounced these endorsements (after trying to lie about having no knowledge of who Duke was), however he didn’t do much of anything outside of appear straight-up annoyed at all the fuss. And he only did it under duress. He gets no points whatsoever. Perhaps Trump could have taken a queue from the GOP’s beloved St. Ronald Reagan and copied the Gipper’s response to the hate organization that endorsed him in both 1980 and again in 1984. You see, even Reagan clearly understood how vile the KKK is and even wrote a letter to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights in April of 1984 about how dangerous the Klan, and organizations like them really are. It read in part:
Those of us in public life can only resent the use of our names by those who seek political recognition for the repugnant doctrines of hate they espouse. The politics of racial hatred and religious bigotry practiced by the Klan and others have no place in this country, and are destructive of the values for which America has always stood.
Trump voters, though you can try all you want to rationalize that your vote was for “change,” your IQ test at the voting actually just confirmed that you—yes you—are in fact “okay” with racism. Which actually makes you a racist, too.
‘Danza Macabra Europea’ number 23 by Italian artist Alberto Martini.
Alberto Martini was a prolific Italian active during the late 1800s and a good portion of the 1900s who dabbled in many disciplines including painting, illustration, engraving and graphic design. During WWI Martini was enlisted to create a series of postcards called the “Danza Macabra Europea” that were used as propaganda, grotesquely lampooning figures such as German Kaiser and king of Prussia Wilhelm II as well as members of the Austro-Hungarian empire such as the Emperor of Austria Franz Josef.
Martini’s cards are absolutely horrific, filled with depictions of dismemberment, cannibalism and executions. Sometimes the Germans in Martini’s propaganda cards are pantless or appear to take on feminine forms. Copies of 54 lithographs of the Danza Macabra produced during 1914 and 1916 were widely distributed to Allied forces fighting against the rising Austro-Hungarian empire. According to cultural historians familiar with Martini’s work for “Danza Macabra Europa” the artist’s goal was to show the “horror” of war by using barbaric symbolism such as portraying the neutral country of Belgium as a child whose hands have been severed off at the wrist.
Most of the approximately 450,000 prints of Martini’s exquisitely grim postcards, captioned in both Italian and French, were sent to those fighting on the front lines of the war to help create a clear understanding of the horrific atrocities being committed against soldiers and civilians. Many consider Martini’s work a precursor to the surrealist movement. I’ve included many images of the 54 lithographs done by Martini in this post—all of which are absolutely NSFW.
Despite legitimately heartening developments like the legalization of same-sex marriage, it gets easier every day to arrive at the cynical conclusion that social progress in the United States just might be impossible because the troglodytes have at last reached critical mass. Look at something as fundamental to democracy as the vote: since the Supreme Court’s shocking 2013 evisceration of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, new onerous and racially-applied voter suppression laws are being trail-ballooned to take the place of long-outlawed tactics like poll taxes and literacy tests, all to ensure that African Americans can’t vote in significant enough numbers to topple white hegemony. And if people of color are excluded from the voter rolls, they can’t serve as jurors, ensuring not just the continuation but the strengthening of our nation’s enduring tradition of judicial outcomes that are skewed dramatically against non-whites.
(Before some “Party of Lincoln” troll points it out: yes, the Republicans used to be the somewhat less racist major party. That changed in 1964 and it’s been the party of white bigotry ever since. You’ve had 52 years to figure that out, and if you haven’t yet, you need to permanently shut your wronghole.)
The long and the short of all this is that if things continue going south (seewhatididthere) America might experience another Selma.
There’s a good reason that Selma, AL became a significant locus in the Civil Rights Movement, especially as regards voting rights. Selma in the early ‘60s was half black, but only 1% of black citizens were registered to vote. It’s not that they were disinterested. Besides the literacy test, Klan violence and other extra-legal disincentives to registration were widespread, and the registration office was only open two days a month, at difficult hours. By 1964, when serious voter drives were happening in black communities, a judge actually enjoined against organizing. The official nationwide desegregation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 did little for voting rights, so activists organized a march from Selma to Alabama’s capital city of Montgomery. That march took place on Sunday, March 7th, 1965, and due to the unhinged brutality of the attacks on demonstrators by state troopers and county deputies, all basically acting under the aegis of the notorious segregationist Governor George Wallace, that day is forever known as Bloody Sunday.
Two weeks later, on Sunday the 21st, the march was attempted again. This time, the National Guard protected the marchers from violence by county and state authorities (and enthusiastic amateurs). About 3,000 people started the march in Selma—many of whom had traveled from around the country, shocked by the images of Bloody Sunday they’d seen in the news. By the time the marchers arrived safely in Montgomery, the demonstration’s population approached 25,000. The Voting Rights Act passed and was signed by President Lyndon Johnson later that year. And every hero who shed blood in the name of equality on Bloody Sunday was spat on by the SCOTUS in 2013 when they rendered that law utterly toothless.
To tie that history to contemporary perspectives on voting rights in America, documentary filmmaker Brian Jenkins, previously known for the vinyl-freak ode Records Collecting Dust (which you’ve perhaps read about on this very blog), has made Answering the Call. Jenkins’ uncle John Witeck was among those who heeded Dr. King’s plea for support in March of 1965; he marched on the so-called “Turnaround Tuesday” march on the 9th, and remained in Selma for other protests leading up to the final march to Montgomery, an experience which wound up catalyzing a lifetime’s work for social progress. For Answering the Call, he returned to Alabama with his nephew and a camera crew.
The doc doesn’t just trace the history of black disenfranchisement, it’s engaged in the now. With a racially-charged (to say the LEAST) presidential election fast approaching, the issue has reached new heights of urgency, and it’s amazing to hear the Secretary of State of Alabama letting NASTY racist dog-whistles fly so freely while discussing the franchise. I’m perpetually, existentially disheartened that we still have to be struggling over the exact same shit after half a century—Alabama’s Constitution remains loaded with segregationist provisions. They’re currently unenforceable thanks to federal laws that supersede them, but given the right SCOTUS, that could change shockingly quickly.
Asked for a statement on the film, director Jenkins responded to Dangerous Minds in an email exchange:
Only 60% of eligible voters in the United States will turn out on election day for a presidential election (even less for midterm and primary elections). I’m sympathetic to the 40% who choose not to participate but I’d like to pose the question, “If voting doesn’t matter, then why is the Republican Party working so hard to keep us from the polls?” Whether it’s gerrymandering, voter ID laws, eliminating early voting and same day registration, or switching up polling locations at the last minute, the GOP has made access to the polls a primary target and priority since the election of Barack Obama.
I had the chance to sit down with Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill and discuss the controversy surrounding the state’s voter ID law and it’s recent decision to close 31 DMV locations across the state—which made it even more difficult to register and vote in Alabama. Voting is a right guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution. So to hear a Secretary of State refer to this right as a “privilege” is deeply troubling and wrong.