Too many have short memories about our ancestors and voting. Please don't let others define what our ancestors died for. Our ancestors voted as a strategy to achieve greater freedom, equity, and status as "Americans." Reconstruction also taught us a valuable lesson about voting - freedom, equity, status. We learned that voting, winning elections, implementing great policy and amazing financial stewardship while in office is no insurance of freedom, a better life, respect from whites, or protection of laws written by whites for whites.  We learned that voting was a tenuous and temporal strategy - at best. Please read DuBois' Black Reconstruction and Harding's There Is A RiverIf that’s too far back watch American Blackout The great constant isn't voting, it is our deep Spriituality and the river of our spirited actions moving relentlessly to the ocean of freedom, restoration, and self determination. If we really believe that voting in any current or future election will lead to greater freedoms for our people, then our voting is standing on the broadest of our ancestors' shoulders. We would be honoring their noblest aspirations, and should vote proudly. If we are voting for anything less - including "equity" or "status," then we are enshrining their limitations, honoring their injected oppression, and the implanted alien ideas that their "status" or worth was dependent on European respect. It is incumbent upon us to discern which of these is the motivator, for that will determine the follow-up. While our ancestors would want us to understand their sickness born of years of physical and psychic brutality, they would not want us to laud or imitate their sickness as a badge of honor.  To do that is enshrining their limitations, and is no honor at all. That would be like a parent who tried to quit smoking, failed to do so, and on his dying bed wished that his children honor him by lighting up themselves. For the part of our ancestors who voted for "respect," who voted to live vicariously through a Black representative, senator, or president so that they could believe themselves respected by whites or the world, we are doing them a disservice. We are enshrining their limitations. From the other side, they see that such vicarious living - especially in an oppressed environment - is an oppressor-projected illusion to match and stimulate our delusion born of years of psychic violence. We need to vote and work for freedom and justice and for attaining the power to determine our own circumstances, to lead ourselves and the world. Voting simply "because they died for the right to vote" without asking and aligning ourselves with their highest aspiration for freedom and justice and making sure we're voting for that is dishonoring them and what they really lived and died for. Each must ask and answer how we think our vote will lead to our freedom, justice, and power.  That is what we should tell others. That is what we need to use to move others, instead of the "our ancestors died...." mantra. Race to The Bottom Worse still is the race to the bottom:  "the lesser of two evils" appeals.  Such an appeal reveals our abrogation of our responsibility to shape new paths to freedom for our people to vote for and participate in. Now that "the" election is over, what will you push people to "vote" or work for?  What injustice are you fighting against for which you will evoke ancestral guidance? What are you engaged in that you believe will lead our people to more freedom and power to dictate our own lives and protect us from others on either a local, national or international scale? Do we need their permission to "sell" our people on voting, moving, or acting? Do we need an "election" sanctioned by them to get our people to "elect" to act for freedom, to stand for injustice? Our children are taken from schools to prisons daily. Will you ask me to join you to vote and work to change that? We are in the middle of the largest transfer of wealth from the Black community's meager pockets to those of wealthy whites since our physical captivity. Will you ask me doggedly to join you in court or in the streets to stop that? Food, health, water, business, you name it, we're being aggressed upon by aliens. Take your pick of areas in which to work. We're being beat up in all of these areas by many different groups; vote and work to stop the aggression and the aggressors and to heal our communities. Ask me - repeatedly on Face Book, in the grocery stores, with buttons, and bill boards, at the round tables and the kitchen table to vote and work with you for that! Please use the same excitement, the same dogged zeal, the vaulted ancestral veneration to get our people to work with you and thatcause for freedom. Ask them to vote with their feet, their hands, intellect and money. Evoke the true spirit of our ancestors who voted, worked and died for freedom.  Now it's our turn. Respectfully Submitted, Wekesa O. Madzimoyo, Thanks for reading, and I welcome your comments, pro or con. If you'd like, you may forward this piece by using the forwarding links at the bottom. Next up... In response to Dr. Julianne Malveaux, president of Bennett College, I'll address the Economic Gap. Next, meet me in Beaumont, TX on Nov. 20th for the 13th annual Cultural and Economic Summit which is a part of the We Are One Power Conference ( After that, I'll be back to Texas -- this time in Dallas for a family healing retreat that we call FAM and Feel the Flow of Success. Register now: ( Sincerely, Wekesa O. Madzimoyo, AYA Educational Inst. COMPRO-TAX 404.201.2356                Powerful people don't teach powerless people how to take power away from them. (Baba John Henrik Clarke) Family, voting is on our minds. Some have already turned their attention to 2012. During this recent election, many evoked the memories of our ancestors to get us out to vote. Some crossed the line.