Let Thy Voice Rebuke Vanity Thru Overwhelming Votes

By Elder Siahyonkron Nyanseor
Jonesboro, Georgia

 

June 13, 2016


The greatness of America is best expressed by a quote from Emma Lazarus' sonnet "The New Colossus". In mixed free verse and rhythmic dramatic monologue, it tells how the Statute of Liberty (at the then gateway, New York, into America) welcomes all immigrants.

 

It reads:
        "Give me your tired, your poor.
        Your huddled masses yearning to
        breathe free.
        The wretched refuse of your
        teeming shore.
        Send these, the homeless,
        tempest -tossed, to me;
        I lift my lamp beside the golden 
        door."

 

Unsurprisingly, before and after the 1883 sonnet, in droves they came from Spain, England, Holland, Ireland, Italy, Germany and so on. Ironically, the most oppressed of the races in the new land of hope were the Africans forcibly brought in chains. But with time, the descendants of those stolen Africans are now called African Americans, and the assimilation of strangers inherent in the "melting pot" phrase, has mushroomed to include other races -  hence the promotion to "tossed salad". Undoubtedly, this unity in diversity symbolizes the nation's strength as the greatest in the known world. Therefore, it is un-American for any citizen to tear apart centuries of this well-crafted tapestry called the United States, for which millions of immigrants, their children, and grandchildren made the ultimate sacrifice to protect this country.

 

Indeed, the founding fathers foresaw the wisdom of ensuring a unified people, so they established America on the following principle:


"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common Defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America".

 

That's why individuals like Mr. Donald Trump are out of step with - the vision/ mission of this land of Liberty. It would sound like a cliché to numerate his racist rants, sexism, bigotry, divisiveness, and rabble - rousing. Nevertheless, as an Elder of the International Christian Fellowship Ministries (ICF), Atlanta, what stood out for us is his claim of being a Presbyterian; even though on July 19, 2015 his answer to Frank Luntz, who had asked whether he had ever asked God for forgiveness, was a noncommittal "I don't think I've ever asked God for forgiveness". That response said everything about the lack of humility of the Republican Party's presumptive nominee, and is indicative that a Trump presidency will be unaccountable to mere mortal electorates.

 

Truth be told, as an immigrant from Africa, his stereotyping of Africans as lazy riled many because our people labored too to build this country his grandfather found attractive to come to. However, the question is, how can one allow himself to be provoked by a fellow - sinner too big to ask our father's forgiveness? Make no mistakes, nonetheless, the hot air of plenty jobs, and the refrain "I promise to make America great again" from a deal maker reminds of Satan's futile efforts to tempt Jesus.

 

Like the Jews, African Americans cannot take things for granted or leave their plight to chance. Reparation for African Americans is denied while the US government has

 

compensated other groups of people they have wronged.

A Donald Trump presidency portends a return to the blatantly anti-African Americans policies of the Reagan-Bush years; characterized by a general disregard for Blacks and the perception of Africa as a continent ONLY good for its mineral and natural resources. This is the reason why come November this year, African Americans and Africans who are US citizens should VOTE to deny Mr. Trump the presidency. We will have ourselves to blame if WE DO NOT VOTE!


In short, let me leave you with the poem written by me titled:
VOTE! VOTE! VOTE!
                          I
            To vote is not only a choice
            But rather an obligation required of
            Every responsible citizen
            It is also a RIGHT in a democracy
            A right not found in many political systems
            This you need to know!

                               II
            In order to secure the RIGHT to vote,
            Many men, women, young and old
            Fought and died for this RIGHT
            Therefore, to treat it like it is useless
            Is unwise and irresponsible.

                              III
            Right now, as I write
            There are lots of people all over the world
            Who wish they had a fraction of our freedom
            Let alone, the RIGHT to vote
            For the candidate of their choice
            But they are denied the RIGHT to do so.

                              IV
There were a multitude of people who died
            So you and I will be able to cast our ballots
            For whoever we feel deserve our votes
            But if you fail to do so like those who feel
            It is a waste of time or lesser of two evils
            Then you're no better than those who in the past
            Thought it was a privilege and not our RIGHT.
                             V
To vote is not only a choice
            But rather an obligation of a responsible citizen
            It was fought for - so we could exercise it wisely
            Without fear or intimidation
            Therefore, to do otherwise is to deny yourself
            Your country and especially,
            Those who fought so hard to safeguard it for US.
                             VI
If you elect to disfranchise yourself
            You and those who behave in this manner
            Will have no say in whatever laws or policies
            The government and elected officials pass
            Because, a democracy is like a bank account
            What you put in it, is what you expect to gain
            If you failed to be a part of this exercise
            You need not say a word about the government
            You had your choice but you elected not to EXERCISE it.

 

GO VOTE ON NOVEMBER 2016!

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About The Author: Elder Siahyonkron Nyanseor is former Chair of the ULAA Council of Eminent Persons (UCEP), Inc. He is a poet, Griot, journalist, cultural and political activist. He is an ordained Minister of the Gospel; Chairman of the Liberian Democratic Future (LDF), publisher of theperspective.org online newsmagazine and Senior Advisor to the Voice of Liberia newsmagazine. In 2012, he Co-authored Djogbachiachuwa: The Liberian Literature Anthology; his book of poems: TIPOSAH: Message from the Palava Hut is on the market. Elder Nyanseor can be reached at: siah1947@gmail.com


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