Purposely Inaccurate Billboards Terrorize Poor Blacks & Latinos

This swing state’s politicians have a new way to suppress voter rights.

Discrimination in Advertising? Latino Voters Being Deterred From Polls by Billboard Campaign“Racist” voter ID laws were struck down by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Oct. 2, but that hasn’t stopped the state’s politicians from trying to discourage Latino voters from rightfully casting their ballots on Nov. 6.

Just two weeks shy of the presidential election, a series of state-sponsored billboards reading “Si Quieres Votar, Muéstrala” (If You Want to Vote, Show It) were erected in predominantly Latino neighborhoods. The wording of the signs is highly misleading given that implementation of the law requiring photo IDs at the polls was postponed until 2013.

Sign this petition to tell Pennsylvania state officials and Clear Channel to stop intimidating Latino voters.

Former city councilman Juan Ramos is furious, say local news sources. Ramos now works for the Delaware Valley Voter Registration Education Project, a nonprofit that focuses on increasing voter registration in Philadelphia’s Latino communities. “This is a very slick attempt by the state government to carry out voter suppression,” he said.

But the Pennsylvania Department of State has no plans to remove the deceptive billboards. Officials say the campaign is the result of a court order to educate all voters that poll workers will ask for photo identification, although it is not yet a legal requirement.

Coincidence? You Decide

The state was slow to remove voter ID requirements from its websites: The Bucks County, Luzerne County and Borough of West Chester official websites stated until Oct. 9 that photo IDs were necessary to vote. Pontealdia.com points out that Luzerne County coincidentally has one of the fastest growing Latino populations in the nation, increasing 85 percent from 14,500 in 2000 to 26,782 in 2010. Read more data about the Latino demographic.

This intimidating billboard tactic, also has been used in Ohio, as reported by Mother Jones. Watch this video below, which shows a billboard on voter fraud in a predominantly Black community in Cincinnati.

Pennsylvania historically leans Democratic, but the state has become more of a battleground for Republicans in the 2012 election. Currently, President Obama holds an 11-point lead over Governor Romney. Other swing states include Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and Wisconsin.

For more on voter ID laws and the election, read:

Are Voter ID Laws Racist?

The Voter-Fraud Myth: What Racist Voter ID Laws Are Really About

Are Obama & Romney Ignoring Latinos?

Why Obama & Romney Aren’t Connecting With Women

Racist Obama Facebook Pages & Your Office: What Do You Need to Know?

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  • Mary Balboni

    Your web site, http://www.diversityinc.com is becoming and has become so slanted – when I get an announcement email from you website, I cringe and am never surprised on the leanings of your emails.

    This subject of voter fraud is so serious no matter what party you are in, yet somehow you make it out that voter fraud is one party against the other, and it always is, in your eyes, against Obama.

    Sadly the biggest voter fraud has been seen by organizations that support Obama, e.g. having dead people (no specific race here, just dead people) register and vote for Obama. (Ref. Acorn organizations and lawsuits from last election time period)

    I would like this web site to mature to the point where your articles are not polarized along race, sex or religous boundaries and find more areas where we are all coming together – your focus is LOOKING for ways to keep separationism alive. We need to move past this and become one America again – Protect our country and each citizen in our country to make it a great country again. Each and every citizen is important, no matter race, creed or gender.

    THis country needs help (and not from CHina!) and we need change – and it IS coming – a well deserved change.

    • Luke Visconti

      The country coming together will be at the grace of oppressed people forgiving their oppressors, not before, and it is not in the nature of relationships that people who benefited from holding another group down can demand forgiveness. The process of being more honest initially leads to discomfort for the majority—that discomfort is injustice leaving the body. Fortunately, it is human nature to be forgiving. That’s why our country has made so much progress so far.
      Your allegations about voter fraud simply don’t hold up. THINK about it: In order to sway an election, the fraud would have to be on the scale of thousands of people—not just from predominantly Democratic areas but, to be successful, from predominantly Republican areas. It’s simply not possible, which is why there isn’t a single study that shows voter fraud that rises above insignificant.
      Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

      • So voter fraud on the small scale is OK with you…. I believe if you think you are oppressed and victims of the world, you will never ever become part of the whole, you will always demand entitlements that other hardworking people do not demand. Your web site encourages continued victim thinking – I would like to see empowerment by becoming a valued member of society, education, hard work, ability to get along with people, innovative, flexable. Basically what my family did two generations ago when we became legal immigrants from Italy, had to learn a new language and work hard. It was not easy and we never took handouts. We were poorer than poor. We obeyed the laws. We had self respect and worked and achieved. Yes, we were called names, but we were not going to be victims. America was great. Time for that to happen again.

        • Luke Visconti

          Why would you assume voter fraud is only from one side? Did you read the article you’re commenting on? This is criminal activity from right-wing thugs who are scaring people from voting. Disgusting.

          And by the way, your ancestors and mine took plenty from society: public schools, libraries, Social Security, Medicare. Many people stepped up and gave back—read up on Andrew Carnegie—and we put Bill Gates on our front cover a few years ago because of his philanthropic record. A good society works hard to provide a ladder up and makes sure it isn’t pitched too steeply. I agree with you that it’s time America focuses on becoming great again. With less than 25 percent of Americans approving what Congress is doing—and the poor quality of the ideas presented in this campaign from both candidates—I’m afraid we’re not going to see any near-term change regardless of who wins. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • After that demographic of 50.4% of children one year old and younger are the “majority” of the country, some tribal folks got VERY NERVOUS and decided that only members of “their tribe” should be allowed to vote.

    That’s what happens when folks conveniently forget that the United States of America is a modern NATION-STATE,
    and not merely a place for one tribe to decide that all the other tribes “don’t have a right to sit at the table.”

    It’s sad to have to write that in 2012….

    • The only ones that “should not sit at the table” are non-U.S. citizens, dead people, and ficticious characters such as Micky Mouse and friends. These should not vote…again.

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