The state of Alabama announced that it will no longer be issuing drivers licenses in predominately African American counties. This is extremely problematic because Alabama now requires a photo ID to vote. By making it impossible to receive a driver’s license in counties where 75% of registered voters are black, they eliminate the black vote in one of the most blatant efforts to disenfranchise minority voters that our nation has ever seen.
The state passed the voter ID restriction, which demands a voter present a picture ID prior to voting, a full year ago. This was a controversial enough measure, as not everyone has an ID and getting an ID requires money and time that many people don’t have. Now, the overt repression of the black vote has reached a new apex. Getting a license from a nearby DMV is not an option. As a result of budget cuts, thirty-one satellite DMVs offices “no longer have access to driver’s licenses examiners.” This means residents will have to travel to other, faraway white counties to apply for licenses.