Talk:American Government Lecture Eleven

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Lecture improvements?

Dear Mr. Schlafly,

Thank you for allowing me to improve this lecture and for your refinements of my contributions for clarity (which hopefully should make the lecture easier for students to understand). I understand that you are the teacher of this class, so I won't get into an edit war or extensive argument, but there were several edits I made that were not incorporated into the final version of the lecture; I wrote them for a reason.

  • First of all, I just noted a mistake in the following sentence in the voting rights act section "The U.S. Constitution does not establish a right to vote by anyone. For our entire Nation's history the laws concerning elections have been established by each State for its own residences." The last word should probably be "residents."
  • "State" and "Nation" are not proper nouns. Therefore, they should not be capitalized except at the beginning of a sentence or in a title.
  • The 1965 Voting Rights Act was passed with support from both parties. To the extent that 1960s political parties' actions can translate to positions of modern political parties, it should be noted that it had bipartisan support. Further, it was reauthorized under Nixon, Ford, Reagan and George W. Bush, with the last two signing reauthorizations for 25 year periods.
  • The part about a court's ability to issue a preliminary injunction is not that relevant. Perhaps you would know whether the standard for a preliminary injunction has changed since 1965. However, I would assume (I didn't check the debates) that Congress did consider the possibility of obtaining a preliminary injunction and found even the effort to obtain a preliminary injunction (especially against a recalcitrant state) too onerous with respect to discriminatory voting practices. In fact, I would note that Wisconsin's voter ID law, which is currently blocked, was in effect for one election in February 2012 before being preliminarily and then permanently enjoined by a state judge.
  • I don't know why my clarification about the VRA protecting other minorities aside from African-Americans was removed. Students may appreciate that Alaska has a significant American Indian population, which would explain why it might be covered. As written the phrase "States (like Alaska) that had no history of racial discrimination against African Americans in elections" is irrelevant and misleading.

Feel free to do whatever you want with my suggestions. As someone who cares about civics and an educated voting public, I take the writing of lectures and other educational materials very seriously (as I know you do too!). Thanks, GregG 22:49, 1 January 2013 (EST)

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