Yes, she can

The daughter of a slave votes for Barack Obama.

Topics: Broadsheet, Love and Sex,

Like Bitch Ph.D., I’ve been waiting for this story.  

Amanda Jones, 109 — whose father was born into slavery — has cast her mail-in vote for Barack Obama, the nation’s first black presidential nominee.

As the Austin American-Statesman reports, the Jones family has lived in right-leaning Bastrop County, Texas, for five generations. Jones’ father herded sheep as a slave until he was 12. As a free man, he raised cows, hogs and turkeys on his own land. Jones’ mother — with whom he went on to have 13 children — was born right after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.

You Might Also Like

But there was freedom, and there was freedom: the Jones’ descendants “had to eat at segregated barbecue dives and walk through the back door while white customers walked through the front.”

Still, Jones’ father “urged her to exercise her right to vote, despite discriminatory practices at the polls and poll taxes meant to keep black and poor people from voting,” the article states, adding that those practices were outlawed for federal elections in 1964, but not for state and local races in Texas until 1966. (Thank goodness we no longer have to worry about that kind of thing.) Jones cast her first presidential vote for Franklin D. Roosevelt. (For which of his terms, she can’t recall.) Her daughters confirm that she paid her poll tax before pulling the lever. 

Because Amanda Jones is too weak to get herself to the polls, two of her 10 children helped her fill out and send a mail-in ballot for Obama. “I feel good about voting for him,” she said.

So do we, Ms. Jones. So do we.

Award-winning journalist Lynn Harris is author of the comic novel "Death by Chick Lit" and co-creator of BreakupGirl.net. She also writes for the New York Times, Glamour, and many others.

More Related Stories

Featured Slide Shows

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • 1 of 10
  • Close
  • Fullscreen
  • Thumbnails
    Michael Ohl/Museum fur Naturkunde

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Soul-Sucking Dementor Wasp

    Latin name: Ampulex dementor

    Truong Ngyuen

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    10,000th reptile species

    Latin name: Cyrtodactylus vilaphongi

    Jodi Rowley/Australian Museum

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Colour-changing thorny frogs

    Latin name: Gracixalus lumarius

    Judith L. Eger

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Long-fanged bat

    Latin name: Hypsugo dolichodon

    Neang Thy Moe/FFI

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Stealthy wolf snake

    Latin name: Lycodon zoosvictoriae

    Michael Janes

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Feathered coral

    Latin name: Ovabunda andamanensis

    Jerome Constant

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    World's second-longest insect

    Phryganistria heusii yentuensis

    Nantasak Pinkaew

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Slide 8

    Latin name: Sirindhornia spp

    Tim Johnson

    Soul-sucking 'dementor' wasps and 8 other crazy new species

    Slide 9

    Tylototriton shanorum

  • Recent Slide Shows

Comments

0 Comments

Comment Preview

Your name will appear as username ( settings | log out )

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href=""> <b> <em> <strong> <i> <blockquote>