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Lyndon B. Johnson's Explaination of our Fundamental Rights in “American Promise: Message to Congress”

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Voting rights have been a constant struggle for most people in America. During the eighteenth century, only property owning white men were able to vote. This means that the colored individuals and women were excluded from the basic right to vote. The southern white society deeply opposed the idea of African Americans voting, creating discriminating legislations furthering the problem in a society dominated by White Americans. Lyndon B. Johnson outlines the differences between the law and justice and emphasize the fact that laws must be questioned in order for justice to be served. Laws are created for an equal platform for all citizens of America but some laws do not encompass the entire situation to serve justice. In the “American…show more content…
Ironically, many Americans fought for equal rights but practiced slavery which took away from the progression of our society as a whole. The intersectionality of race, class, and gender prevented many people from voting even though there were laws stating equal voting rights for all citizens. Race should not forbid African Americans from voting. To remedy injustice, Johnson says that our society as a whole needs to be more open-minded about these social issues to evolve as a progressive country. The Voting Rights Act was intended to end discrimination but since the states each had their own pre-clearance requirements, it undermined the entire reasoning and promise of equality to African Americans. The unfair treatment towards African Americans is embedded in the social system that even though they are given the right to vote, institutional racism comes into play which wholly prevents them from being able to cast their votes.

Lyndon B. Johnson defines justice as a “mans unending search for freedom” (Johnson 103). He believes that the only way all men can be equal is when a democratic society is built and the basic right to vote is given to all citizens of America. Johnson links religion to justice by saying that God can help the oppressed people by creating a democratic government. The democratic government will help all citizens receive equality because “the most basic right of all was the right to
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