When I heard the announcement this week that Stacey Abrams has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for her work against voter suppression, I was thrilled. I read her book, Our Time is Now: Power, Purpose, and the Fight for a Fair America, a few weeks ago (actually, I first listened to her narrating the audiobook version of her book, and then read the print version), and I was deeply impressed.
Our Time Is Now, is very well written and also very engaging. As I read through it, I kept thinking that it should be required reading for every high school student, and for every voter! Do we still teach Civics in high school? This book would be an extremely important addition to that curriculum! Are we, as voters, educated about the right to vote or do we just take it for granted?
I (shamefully) didn’t know very much about the way voting really works, and doesn’t work, in this country. But I was gifted an extensive education about it by Stacey Abrams. It is shocking and sobering to learn what has happened to our right to vote, but she elucidates the issue very well and goes way beyond describing that sobering news. She creates a clear and hopeful guide for how it can be dealt with and changed, and how powerful and necessary those changes are to insure fair elections in the future. Her knowledge and understanding of that process is extensive and impressive, and her writing very clear and understandable.
Our Time Is Now is my longer, more complicated answer to how we can frame and revise voting rights and the architecture of American democracy for the current age. My hope is that they can read this book, written by a sojourner like myself who has seen glimpses of our possible future.
Stacey Abrams is one of my heroes, and this book solidified that feeling even more for me. I told my family that this book is a “must read…” And I repeat that here for all voters, and young people preparing to become voters!