Making It Plain

We’re fighting disinformation and voter suppression and giving you the facts!

Making It Plain:

Frequently Asked Questions

Vote by Mail

Let’s be clear: The false narrative created and perpetuated by one party around vote by mail is a direct attack on our community. It is intentional and meant to stoke fears, silence our communities, and keep us from exercising our right to vote. Plain and simple – it is voter suppression.

I keep hearing that vote-by-mail is new and an unreliable way to cast my ballot. Is this true?

No, this is 100% false. These types of statements are intended to sow doubt, create confusion, and keep people from voting during an election season where vote-by-mail is an important option, especially for those who are at higher risk of contracting Covid-19. The truth is  vote-by-mail is tried and tested and has been around since the Civil War. In fact, states like Washington, Oregon, Hawaii, and Utah conduct their elections almost entirely by mail and have been doing so for many years.  In some states you can actually track your ballot — click here to find out if ballot tracking is available where you vote.

Is voter fraud rampant and exacerbated by vote-by-mail?

No. First, voter fraud is actually very rare. In most cases where fraud is thought to have occured, it is because someone makes a mistake. Claims of fraud are baseless and there is no evidence to back them up. This is a tactic to discourage voters from using mail-in-voting and prevent mail-in-voting from being accessible to all. Click here if you’d like to learn more about the myths of voter fraud.

Does mail in voting give one political party an advantage?

No. The practice of voting by mail is a non-partisan activity. Independent, Republican, and Democratic candidates have emerged as winners in elections with mail in voting.

Covid-19

There are lots of rumors and myths around what COVID-19 is and what it isn’t.  The dishonesty, lack of accountability, and misdirected blame have done nothing but fan the flames of confusion. Even some of our elected officials are driving this misinformation. Simply put: COVID-19 is not a joke and its impact on our communities has been devastating.

I’ve heard that COVID-19 is a hoax and at worst, similar to a mild case of the flu; and, they say if you’re asymptomatic (without symptoms) you can’t transmit it to others, so what’s the big deal?

Whew, so much to unpack here. First and foremost, COVID-19 is not a hoax. Over 200,000 Americans have died from  the virus and the number of total cases, in the United States alone, is over 7 million!  COVID-19 is more contagious among certain populations and age groups than the flu and has been observed to have more superspreading events than the flu. This means that the virus that causes COVID-19 can quickly and easily spread to a lot of people and result in continuous spreading among people as time passes. And, even if you are asymptomatic, you can and will spread the virus. Please, take it seriously and wear your mask, wash your hands, and practice physical distancing. 

Is COVID-19 the Chinavirus?

Nope! Not only is this completely untrue, it’s actually incredibly xenophobic. Referring to Covid-19 as the Chinavirus is a shameful attempt at diverting blame and stoking xenophobic and racist attitudes towards Asian communities. 

We now know that our government was briefed multiple times at the start of the year about the virus and its severity. In fact, they even praised China’s handling of the outbreak in January and refused to criticize the nation. But, despite the warnings and everything we know about the virus, our country’s leadership continues to downplay Covid-19’s impact.

When we are going to get a Covid-19 vaccine?

It’s hard to say. Developing a new vaccine is a process that takes time, especially in this case where scientists are learning more about the coronavirus, the virus that causes COVID-19, as they develop the vaccine. When developing a safe and effective vaccine, it must  go through several cycles of clinical trials, requiring several thousands of people to successfully and thoroughly test the safety and effectiveness of it. Usually, it takes years to develop and test a vaccine for safety and effectiveness but given the nature of this pandemic, the COVID-19 vaccine is being developed in record time. So, will we have a vaccine by the end of the year? Mid-2021? Longer?! Unfortunately, the truth is no one really knows when a vaccine will be ready for the public; all we can be certain of right now is that there are several in development.

If we catch COVID-19 and recover from it, won’t we have herd immunity?

Let’s first start with what ‘herd immunity’ is. According to the Mayo Clinic, “herd immunity occurs when a large portion of a community (the herd) becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. As a result, the whole community becomes protected — not just those who are immune.”

60% to 70% of the population would have to contract and recover from COVID-19 to achieve herd immunity — in other words, 200 million Americans and 5.6 billion people worldwide would be impacted. In order to achieve herd immunity without a vaccine, we would have to risk a lot of lives because not everyone recovers and over 999,000 people have died worldwide.

Data source: The New England Journal of Medicine

Racism & White Nationalism

White nationalism is dangerous and racism is killing us. The disinformation being spread about our movement, who we are, and what we want is an effort to sow disdain and discourage support. 

BLM are terrorists calling for the destruction of America.

These tired tropes are attempts to undermine a powerful and growing movement in Black Lives Matter. 

The truth is, we want what everyone wants: adequate and safe housing, healthcare, economic equity and opportunity; we want to live free from over-policing and threats of being caged within the prison industrial system. Simply put, we want the freedom to thrive. Bottomline: We are not terrorists. We are sisters, mothers, brothers, and fathers who are demanding that our country live up to its highest ideals and promises.

Peaceful protests have been hijacked by rioters and looters. These people don’t care about Black lives; they only care to cause confusion, mayhem, and damage to our communities.

Don’t be fooled – this framing and narrative is intentional. In most cities across the country, rioting, looting, and lawlessness are not taking place. These false narratives are attempts to stop what are for the most part, peaceful protests.

What is white nationalism?

White nationalism is an ideology or idea that race is hierarchical and at that the top of that hierarchy is whiteness. Many policies, systems, and societal attitudes are rooted in this ideology, the impact of which have harmed Black communities in this country for generations. As the country becomes more racially diverse, white nationalists irrationally fear that the “white race” is being ‘replaced.’ According to a report by the Southern Poverty Law Center, white nationalist hate groups have increased by 55% since 2016. The report also notes an increase in homophobic and transphobic organizations. All of these groups have one thing in common: they use the threat of and real violence to terrorize and attempt to silence our communities but we won’t back down.

Help Us Fight Misinformation

The 2020 Presidential election is the most important election in a generation. Black communities are facing widespread mis/disinformation campaigns that are weaponizing the pandemic against U.S. democracy. From voting rights, to healthcare, to white nationalism and police brutality–Black communities are experiencing targeted attacks to lessen our power. But we aren’t having it! 

Join us in combating the lies and propaganda: Through the election, Black to the Future will supply you with weekly social content to make it easy for you to help educate and mobilize your communities.

 

Take Action.

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Black people have too much at stake to not have our voices heard and our needs addressed. Now is our chance to unrig the rules, level the playing field, and put into place policies that work for all of us. But we can’t do it without you. Join us in the fight as we work to make Black people powerful in every aspect of our lives.