Essay on The Voting Rights Act Of 1965

1506 Words Apr 8th, 2016 7 Pages
Voting has been an important part of American elections for centuries. Despite how important voting is, suffrage had to be fought for. In today’s time, there aren’t nearly as many obstacles preventing people from voting as there were in the past. Citizens of the United States are lucky to have the right to vote and should take advantage of it. In the past, discrimination in voting was prevalent. Age, race, and gender were all things that could have determined whether or not you were eligible to vote. Being a citizen did not grant you the right to vote. Two centuries ago, only white men that owned land had that right. In 1870, the fifteenth amendment was passed by Congress. The fifteenth amendment granted suffrage to black males. However, there were still many obstacles that prevented black males from voting. Southern states began using poll taxes and conducted literacy tests to limit black males’ ability to vote. In order to suppress those barriers, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was signed into law. Other racial groups, such as Native Americans, also struggled to gain the right to vote. Native Americans were not even considered citizens until 1924. As for women, they were not granted suffrage until 1920 when Congress passed the nineteenth amendment. In 1971 the twenty-sixth amendment was passed, nationally, setting the voting age to 18 years and older. There have also been acts such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, which makes polling locations accessible to those…

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