Letter: Make our voices heard about gerrymandering

Graphic by Lori Deaton

The map of our gerrymandered congressional district is nearly blatant to the point of satire, if the crude siphoning of half of Asheville into another, not exactly neighboring district didn’t rob us of our voice, fair governance and basic self-determination.

The people of Asheville overwhelmingly favor actual democracy, have little tolerance for discrimination and voter suppression, and favor leaving this beautiful region as a clean and healthy legacy for future generations. Many, in fact, are proud of North Carolina’s history of leadership in renewable energy and see a rededication to creating good-paying, high-tech jobs as a welcome step toward a true Climate City.

Unfortunately, the representation that this politically rigged maneuver has brought us is grievously antithetical to our modern Western Carolina values. And a hard core of power-grubbing autocrats based many miles away is fighting fair redistricting tooth and nail, all the way to the Supreme Court.

If we desire democratic rights for ourselves and our children, this is the very moment that we must shed our tendency of quiet civility and shout, collectively, loud enough that the court in Washington is aware that American citizens will accept nothing short of the legacy the Continental Congress intended for us after blood was shed for this nation’s freedom.

— Dale Davidson
Asheville

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6 thoughts on “Letter: Make our voices heard about gerrymandering

  1. Lulz

    LOL because our real policy of high taxes and power hungry tyrants ain’t getting us votes lulz.

  2. Enlightened Enigma

    pshsst… during their total chokehold on NC for 150+ years, NC democrackkks often gerrymandered districts at their whims without a whimper from anyone… of course no one considers this precedent.

    • luther blissett

      Squirrel!

      If you believe Republicans should control districting for the next 150 years, have the courage to come out and say it.

      In truth, the reason why the usual suspects are opposed to independent non-partisan districting is that they know they can’t win without cheating. It’s the same reason why the usual suspects whine and whine about local government but would never run for election, because they know they’d lose by a huge margin.

    • SpareChange

      The utter absence of political and intellectual honesty on the part of the usual UNenlightened faux populists (LOL) is really quite astounding. Let’s simply concede the obvious — drawing political district lines of any kind is an inherently political and partisan process. Once that is accepted, from there we can either work to create a system that at least attempts to remove some of the sharper partisan edges and makes some attempt to be more representative (regardless of which party is helped or hurt), or we can just continue to perpetuate the same systemic inequities which some commenters whine about existing in the past (but turn a blind eye to now that it works in their favor).

      But invoking past injustices and political chicanery as the rationale for continuing with such practices in the present day is utterly void of belief in any broader principle. It is also incredibly ahistorical in that it fails to recognize that, 1) for most of the 150 years cited, NC was for the most part a one party state in terms of voter registration, and there simply was not much need to engage in gerrymandering in the interest of preserving one party’s advantage over the other, and 2) prior to the party realignments of the 1960s, southern Democrats were normally the more conservative candidates in southern states like North Carolina anyway, which likely would have been more in line with the politics of those same commenters.

      And if we’re going to go by party label (rather than actual political orientations), then arguably there was no worse abuse of such powers than when ‘Republicans refused to seat Democrats who had been elected after the Civil War, and installed members of their own party. So, what it comes down to (as usual) is that what the faux populists are really all about is just wanting to poke anyone who disagrees with them in the eye, rather than engage in some kind of reasonable discussion.

  3. DreadT

    Districts should be drawn by a group of professionals made up of statisticians and cartographers. Not politicians. Remove the people who benefit from the process entirely.

  4. OzarksRazor

    Curious if anyone opposed to the districts did any research based on actual information (aka: data) instead of the misleading yet impassioned “news” articles put out by ACT or Forbes over the last year or so?
    Good Gravy, ya’ll…

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