Commentary: The fierce urgency of now is to vote in November

Commentary: The fierce urgency of now is to vote in November
September 09
12:18 2020

By Dr. James B. Ewers Jr.

“One nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” That was our country’s pledge. Now more than ever we have the fierce urgency to live it by voting in the coming weeks.

We have had times in life where choices that we made determined the outcome. All of us can name enough occasions where our direct actions had an impact.

America has come to another watershed moment in its history. The month of November looms large. Yes, we will celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends. And of course, Black Friday sales will be running non-stop in stores and online.

While important and time-honored, nothing will be more important than us voting in November. This moment must not find us lacking or making excuses.

Derrick Johnson, president of the NAACP, said, “We have racism emanating from the White House.” We know this to be true, but will that compel and propel Americans to vote? For example, Mr. Johnson wants Black voter turnout to increase 5% over 2016.

It is a well-documented fact African Americans had a low voter turnout in the last election. Did we not vote for Hillary Clinton because we thought she did not need our votes? I believe that was the case for some of us.

Everyone must vote! For example, 61% of the naturalized citizens live in just five states. Those states are California, New York, Florida, Texas and New Jersey.

It is the thinking of many pundits that Florida is a battleground state. If you are an immigrant having come to America, you have a birds-eye view of what is happening here. It is my opinion that you may have a loved one or friend who has been caught up in immigration mania. 

This is all the doing of Mr. T, president of the United States of America.

Another group that will have a defining role in this year’s election will be independent voters. Jeffrey Jones, Gallup Poll’s senior editor, says, “There are the people who don’t change their votes, no matter what, but the country is not as polarized as people think. Independents make up the largest group of Americans, and these people are people who can be more easily swayed. They are open to persuasion.”

This block of voters will carry weight. A closer review of independent voters shows that 35% of Americans under the age of 30 say they are independent, according to the Spring 2020 Harvard Youth Study.

Ellen Moorhouse, deputy director of a political action group, said, “Personally, I have never really felt either major party represented my interest.”

The prognosticators and fortunetellers have a prediction on who will win the 2020 presidential election. They have convinced some of us already about who will win.

I know this, and that is, we must vote in November.

Another four years of what we already have is unacceptable. Our standing in the world community is a mess. The nation’s economy is a hot mess. Race relations in America are at their lowest point.

We are being laughed at by the world, we cannot find a job and we are afraid to leave our homes.

America, turn off the snooze button and sound the alarm. The upheaval that we find ourselves in these days is because of the current administration.

I believe that there are enough Americans who voted in the dark the last time and now will vote for the Biden-Harris ticket.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr said, “I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be. This is the way our world is made.”

So, can we depend upon each other to vote on November 3?

Yes we can!

James B. Ewers Jr. is a former tennis champion at Atkins High School and played college tennis at Johnson C. Smith University where he was all-conference for four years. He is a retired college administrator and can be reached at

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