On Nov. 6, Michigan’s 2018 General Election has a lot on the line both at the local and state levels. From governor selections to three major proposals, the stakes are pretty high for Michiganders. When drug convictions of blacks are disproportionate to white offenders, such occurrences offer implications for racial disparities and a need to be woke this election. Proposal 1 has black people in the city seeking a silver lining through legislation as it relates to marijuana use, but will it?
In an interview with Michigan Democratic Party Cannabis Caucus Executive Board and Metro Detroit Regional Chapter Chair, Margeaux Bruner, she offers this perspective on the election, “the candidates are important. However, the non-partisan ballot proposals are an opportunity to be a seismic change in how we operate as a state and as a society.” When asked her take on the proposals she mentioned that Proposal 1, in her opinion, restores civil liberties and sustainable future through adult use of marijuana and hemp legalization. For the other proposals, Bruner felt Proposal 2 would make politicians efficient and districting fair and transparent, while Proposal 3 makes it easier to vote.
Being fully educated on the candidates and pros and cons of each proposal is a hurdle that many voters are still trying to jump. In a time when so many nuances can be couched in the wording of proposals, understanding the ramifications of each is important. According to one voter, Tobias Smith of Detroit, “this election is especially important, because the politics in Michigan thoroughly affects the politics of America. The significance of proposals 1, 2, and 3 is that all of them directly gives the underrepresented of Michigan new opportunities to use policy to positively affect their livelihood in ways that protect them from being manipulated and exploited by way of politics or law.”
As for candidates, whether the race for Michigan governor between Democrat, Gretchen Whitmer and Republican, Bill Shuette, is tightening or not, for blacks in the city, there is a waiting with bated breath as to whether either of the candidates will remember those who often go without consideration. The race to elect Michigan’s next governor is not without the citizens who are minorities, continued race for equity, equality, and basic human needs such as adequate drinking water.
For whatever the opinions of the people are, it is the hope that on November 6th,the right to vote will be exercised. As a note, Michigan does not have a voter ID requirement at the polls, but having identification can never hurt. Also, in the age of social media, selfies, and Trumpian Twitter posts, be mindful that video cameras, still cameras and other recording devices are prohibited. This is a time where the choice to effectuate change is in the hand of each eligible voter, but what will the voter do? In the words of former president, Barack Obama, “Don’t boo. Vote.”