January 11, 2008

Afrosphere Encourages Black Voter Participation


The 2008 presidential election is a seminal historical point in determining the direction of the United States. Our country's leaders must deal with issues of health care, economics, foreign policy, immigration and others that directly affect every American’s life. The difference in 2008 is that we have two viable candidates for a major party presidential nomination who are not white males.

It is important that all Americans who are eligible to vote do so this year. Many of the issues on the national agenda have a disproportionate effect on the Black community. Yet, past voter turnout by eligible Blacks continues to lag behind.

With those factors in mind, the Afrosphere Action Coalition has initiated a 'Proud Black Voter' movement to encourage people of African descent to vote in 2008. The 'Proud Black Voter' blog hopes to:

  • inform the public about the importance of the need to vote
  • facilitate people in getting registered
  • encourage greater voter registration and election participation within the Black community
Music mogul Sean "P. Diddy" Combs stressed the importance of voting in America when he said, "People have died to have that right. When the president is running your country, he is running you". Political commentator Armstrong Williams echoes that sentiment regarding Black people in specific saying, "we must go to the poll and pull that lever, not just for you, but what it has taken for you to be here".

LaTonya Johnson (aka Mrs. Grapevine) started the discussions leading to creation of this Proud Black Voter blog. She wrote, "I am an avid voter…hopefully we can get Black people moving so that we can vote in the Presidential Election in record numbers."

Wayne Hicks (aka Villager) is participating in the Proud Black Voter blog because he sees it as "...a tangible way to use the growing influence of Black bloggers to influence the actions of our readers for the greater good. It is a way to use cyberspace to uplift people of African descent by pointing out ways for them to get registered and vote no mater where they live ... or who they want to support."

The Afrosphere Action Coalition asks all blogs and websites operated by people of African descent to participate by prominently displaying one of the six Proud Black Voter buttons on their blog or website. The HTML widget reads 'Proud Black Voter...Join Me Now, Register to Vote' and can be placed on anyone's blog or webpage with a link back to the Proud Black Voter blog to obtain information on voter registration, voter rights, and other voting issues.

This is a nonpartisan effort to increase participation in the political process. If you have questions or wish to discuss further you can reach out to any member of the Afrosphere Action Coalition, including LaTonya Johnson (info@mrsgrapevine.com), Yobachi Boswell (615.478-5204) or Wayne Hicks (513.362-2703).

20 comments:

Yobachi said...

Well constructed post villager.

I'll just let you know though that you linked to the wrong grapevine journal. Here's the url for MrsGrapevine: http://mrsgrapevine.com/

Villager said...

Yobachi - Good catch! I did make the correction.

I've shared the information about the campaign on both of my blogs along with AA Political Opinion, LinkedIn Business and AfroSpear Blogging While Brown.

I will send out press release to my media contacts later this afternoon.

This should be fun! Hopefully, we will educate and encourage a number of brothers and sisters to participate in the process.

Mes Deux Cents said...

Hi Villager,

Mrs Grapevine sent me the link for the badge last week, so I'm all set. I posted the badge this morning!

Thanks to you and Mrs Grapevine for putting this together.

Villager said...

Mes Deux Cents - Oddly enough, the idea began with Mrs. Grapevine simply sharing her village voice in one of my posts. She took the next step. Yobachi and I helped. However, the brainchild is hers. We're releasing it to the public today. It should be interesting to see where it goes from here...

Regina said...

Hi Villager,

I have my badge posted on my blog and am currently talking to my children and nieces about posting the badge on their myspace pages.

Blessings,
Regina

Woozie said...

Y'all put your phone numbers on the internet? Enjoy the prank calls :)

Villager said...

Woozie - Some things are important. Voter registration in this particular year when we are selecting a replacement for George Bush is one of those years. Yobachi and I thought it worth the so-called risk.

Regina - Outstanding! Please let us know if there is other information out there that you think we should be adding to the Proud Black Voter blog!

MrsGrapevine said...

Thanks Wayne for giving me all the credit, but you are the one that initiated it with your comments on my blog, regarding voting.

Villager said...

Mrs. Grapevine - I'm getting old and my memory is leaving me. The part I'm clear on is that you put the idea into motion! Well done!!

Kismet.4 said...

Hi villager,

I have the badge on my blog (thanks, it is a great idea!)

But I wanted to know--is there a FACEBOOK version I can pass along to those who are interested? Or will there be?

Either way, thanks again. I'm glad I can lend my support.

Villager said...

Kismet - I don't know about the FACEBOOK version. Mrs. Grapevine created the various versions of the badge. I'll ask here about it...

Thank you for your support!

Villager said...

Kismet - You will need to get a Facebook HTML profile box first, and paste the code in there. Here are the links you'll need:

The first is about the box, and the second one is where to get it on Facebook.

http://www.dotcomunderground.com/blogs/2007/11/26/facebook-html-profile-box/

http://www.facebook.com/apps/application.php?id=6004808738

Both of these links provided courtesy of Mrs. Grapevine!

Kat said...

Greetings Villager, A question, please...when you say that you use your blog as "a way to use cyberspace to uplift people of African descent" does that include people of African decent who are not black?

Villager said...

Kat - People of African descent ... probably the only qualifier that I should add is ... in America.

There are few non-Blacks that consider themselves of African descent in America. Unlike those of African descent in Africa where there may be many whites (Afrikaaners and such).

I hope that I've been responsive to your question and I appreciate the opportunity to think more about my blog's mission.

Eddie G. Griffin said...

Again, let me say this is great. It is positive and encouraging... uplifting, even. Count me in. First chance I get, I'm post my badge.

Villager said...

Eddie - Thank you for taking time to share your village voice. As an aside, if you come across information about voter registration that you think would be appropriate for Proud Black Voter blog ... just pass it along and we will get it posted for posterity.

For example, I wonder if there are any exceptions to the rule about past felons not being eligible to vote?

peace, Villager

Eddie G. Griffin said...

The rule for ex-offfenders being able to vote differ from state to state. Some states will not allow them to vote (I think Florida is one) and some states require that a person be completely free of probation and parole. In Texas, a person must be off parole.

Villager said...

Eddie - Thanks for the information. I think that I'll look for some link or website that provides this type of information. It might be useful for the PBV blog.

Sojourner's Place said...

You might enjoy a new political Wikizine focuses on the impact Black women voters will have on the 2008 Presidential Election!

"A Legion of Black Women Voters" is a venue throught which Black women may voice their opinions, ask questions, debate and make an informed decision.

No political candidate or party is endorsed by this 'zine - so feel free to be open and candid with your comments.

See you soon - and don't forget to drop me a line and a kudo!

Sojourner's Place, Proprietor

Wikizine: A Legion of Black Women Voters
http://www.zimbio.com/A+Legion+of+Black+Women+Voters

You can also access it from my blog: Sojourner's Place

http://sojournersplace.blogspot.com

A blog for professional African-American women just trying to survive being black in the workplace.

Villager said...

Sojourner's Place - It is great to see another powerful blog for sisters coming to cyberspace. I look forward to watching the continued growth and evolution of Sojourner's Place over the coming weeks and months.

I hope you share your village voice often!