Black congressman: Calling voter-ID laws 'suppression' is racist

Burgess Owens speaks at the Republican National Convention on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020 (RNC video screenshot)

The primary opposition to laws requiring voters to present photo ID is that they unfairly discriminate against blacks and other minorities, presumably because many are unable to obtain an ID card.

That amounts to racist “voter suppression,” according to critics such as Stacey Abrams, who continues to insist she lost her bid for governor of Georgia for that reason.

But that assumption itself is racists, contends Rep. Burgess Owens, R-Utah, who grew up in the Jim Crow South.

On Twitter, he responded to a user who accused him of “bias” because he opposed gun-control bills while approving of voter ID laws.

“You know what’s racist? Assuming because I’m black that ‘I just don’t have the capability of getting an I-D.’ Disclaimer: We are capable of getting and I-D (and even using the internet!)”

“I used my I.D. to drive a car, to get a job, to board a plane, pick up prescriptions, and virtually everything else in life … So tell me again, why is showing an I.D. ‘Voter suppression’?”

A former NFL all-pro defensive back, Owens won a seat in Congress last fall, representing a district that includes a large portion of Salt Lake City.

In 2016, Ami Horowitz conducted one of his man-on-the-street video surveys, asking white people in New York City what they thought about Voter ID laws.

He captured many saying the laws are inherently racist, designed to suppressed the black vote.

Some said minorities are less likey to have IDs, because they don’t live in areas with “easy access” to DMVs or the internet.

“I feel like they don’t have the knowledge of how it works,” one said.

However, when he asked blacks on a East Harlem street whether they carried state ID, they all said yes and that every black person they knew also had one.

They also were indignant when told of the notion that they didn’t know where to get one or didn’t have access to the internet.

See the video:

Life, liberty and property

The Daily Wire noted Owens speech Wednesday on the House floor arguing Second Amendment rights “protect my life, liberty and property, were granted to me by God, and cannot be taken away from me by D.C. bureaucrats.”

“I grew up in the Deep South at a time when black Americans were unable to defend themselves. After the Civil War, black codes and Jim Crow laws prevented prohibited people of color from owning firearms,” he said. “In the mid-1950s Martin Luther King Jr. carried firearms for self-protection but his application for concealed weapon permit was denied because of racist gun control laws in his state.

Owens said that as a child, his father “witnessed an altercation between his father and a southern white man who thought my grandfather was being disrespectful and threatened to teach him a lesson.”

“Later that night he drove up to my grandfather’s home with a bunch of his friends, standing on the floor-runner of a Model-T Ford,” Owens continued. “My grandfather was prepared; he and his brothers had hidden around his front porch. As these bullies and cowards approached the house, they heard the click of rifles and left as fast as they came. Without firing his gun on another human being, my grandfather’s right to own a firearm ensured his rights to protect his life, liberty and property.”

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