Ahead of the November 3rd election, there is so much discussion about the dismantling of crucial sorting machines at postal offices around the country. The president and his administration have failed to expand their base in the almost four years they’ve been in office. Therefore, they are resorting to intimidation, misinformation, voter disenfranchisement and voter suppression. Sadly, the United States Postal Service is just one of the many ways the Republican party has chosen to target voters and make it more difficult to participate in their democracy and vote.
When I think of the USPS, I am often filled with a tremendous sense of joy. I am a letter writer. I try to write letters to friends and family on a weekly basis. There are just certain things that are better said with a pen and paper and not via text or email. When I tell someone I love them or let them know just how proud I am, I want it to be written in my handwriting. I want them to open an envelope and feel my words come off of the page.
Some of my fondest childhood memories are playing outside in Philadelphia and waiting for Max, our faithful mailman, to walk up our long series of stairs to our home. He took so much pride in his route. He let my parents know when their magazine subscriptions were about to expire and always had words of encouragement for us as we grew through the years.
I remember wrapping his Christmas gift alongside the gifts of family members and choosing which hat and scarf set we would give him each holiday season. Max was such an integral part of our community and when I think of the dedicated post office workers trying to help hold up our democracy, I think of Max.
Even though all of these negative acts are being conducted by the president and his party, it is crucial voters do not get discouraged or confused about the importance of this election. It is imperative we have a comprehensive voting plan for ourselves, family members and friends. It is apparent a possible second wave of the coronavirus is coming and we must think of how we will participate in our civic duty if we are unable to vote in person on November 3rd. If you go to www.vote.org, they can assist you in making such a plan.
As we watch our president battle COVID-19 while simultaneously trying to take away health care for millions of Americans, we must keep all of the White House staff workers, butlers, drivers and secret service agents in our thoughts. They consistently risk their lives to serve the unmasked president, his family and party members and often do not have the luxury or option to work from home and protect themselves.
Christina Greer, Ph.D., is an associate professor at Fordham University, the author of “Black Ethnics: Race, Immigration, and the Pursuit of the American Dream,” and the co-host of the podcast FAQ-NYC.