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Black voters must demand more of Clinton and Sanders

Black voters must demand more of Clinton and Sanders

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The pitched battle being waged by Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders to win the support of South Carolina’s black voters is awash in irony.

It is ironic because South Carolina was the first to take up arms against America rather than admit the full humanity of enslaved Africans. It is ironic because South Carolina stubbornly fought to fly the Confederate flag on its state house even after the mass murder of nine blacks by Dylan Roof. But for me personally, the fight by Democrats to win the black vote in South Carolina is ironic because of my own family’s history in the Palmetto State.

When my great grandmother left South Carolina nearly 90 years ago, black voting rights were systematically denied through state-sanctioned terrorism that was bolstered by the Democrats. Now that the party must depend on the black electorate to win the White House, African Americans must demand something more than lip service from Clinton and Sanders in return for our votes.

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Photo:  Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders at the Democratic Presidential debate from St. Anselm College in Manchester, NH, Dec. 19, 2015 on ABC. By Disney ABC Television Group / Flickr Creative Commons

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Solomon Jones is an Essence bestselling author and award-winning columnist. He is the creator and editor of and morning host on 900 am WURD radio. Click here to learn more about Solomon.