Thoughts from a First-Time Voter…at 99, and 20 (Video)

Ms. Rosie Lewis, 99, has voted for the first time and her vote is with Obama.

The big day is here and everyone is excited, but some are setting real milestones with their vote.  A lot of Americans will be casting their vote for the very first time; some that are becoming old enough to vote; some who have just become citizens; and those that are feeling like citizens for the first time.

Women and African Americans have had their vote, thus their voice, prohibited, stifled,  intercepted, and infiltrated throughout America’s history.  The battle for equality in the history of this country has been nothing less than insurmountable, yet our perseverance pushed through the relentless curtain of racism to get our chance at voting.  But Rosie Lewis had seen too much in an effort to finally get the vote and she decided that voting was not for her…until now.

It took 99 years for her mind to be changed.  She was only seven-years-old when the 19th Amendment was passed giving women the right to vote, but unfortunately, that would not mean a thing for the black community.  Well after the Civil Rights Movement, and just last week, the games were being played at the polls to prevent the minority vote.

But Ms. Lewis has changed her mind and she told reporters for NBC 2 News:

“I said I’m going to vote if the Lord spares my life this time, and I made it up in my mind to vote…I love Obama.”

Nicole Acree, 20, wasn't old enough to vote in the first election for Obama, but she is running to the polls to vote for him now.

She requested a ballot through the mail and her friend turned it in.  Her inspiring journey is not known by another first time voter, but 20-year-old Nicole Acree from Chicago, Illinois, is aware of the history that Ms. Lewis has seen and is happy to join the elite group we call “voters.” She is a sophomore at Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia, and she wrote in to Black Voices’ Reader Spotlight to explain her voting mission and story:

“I was too young to vote for President Obama in 2008, but I told myself that if he was to run for another term, I will be sure to vote. I think voting is a great thing to practice especially for African Americans since we have not been able to vote for that long. Politics will always be politics, and everyone will not agree with every politician, but that does not mean that we as a people should just neglect the right that our people died for…

If President Obama loses, I’m going right on my knees to pray! [laughs] No, but seriously, I will be afraid of the future state of this country if the republican party wins this year, especially for people, like me, who come from a middle class family or people worse off than I am. If people think we are struggling now, I would hate to see what the next four years with Mitt Romney would be like.”

The sentiment they share is shared by all of our president’s supporters and we pray we see you at the polls!  Meet Ms. Lewis below and read more on Ms. Nicole Acree here.

-J.C. Brooks WBBH News for Fort Myers, Cape Coral

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