Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance-Bottoms (D) stressed the importance of minorities exercising their right to vote despite misinformation being spread about the pandemic and voter fraud.
On Thursday evening, Lance-Bottoms delivered her remarks on the final night of the Democratic National Convention. Quoting the words of Audre Lord, she made a plea to voters saying, “Your silence will not protect you.”
The Atlanta native paid homage to the late Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) who spent decades advocating for equal voting rights as she reflected on the words he had written in his parting essay to Americans.
“We must pass on the gift that John Lewis sacrificed to give us, we must register, and we must vote,” she said.
“In his parting essay written to us, Congressman Lewis expressed his pride in the activism that has swept our country and he reminded us that if we fail to exercise our right to vote, we can lose it,” Lance-Bottoms said.
See Lance-Bottoms full speech below:
She also touched on the current threats that are putting voting rights at risk as she highlighted the spread of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing debates placing an emphasis on the possibility of interference with voting in the upcoming election.
“There are those who are disgracefully using this pandemic to spread misinformation and interfere with voting,” Lance-Bottoms said. “Forcing many, in 2020, to still risk their lives to exercise their sacred right to vote—a right that has already been paid for with the blood, sweat, tears, and lives of so many.”
Despite the current challenges voters are faced with as the general election approaches, the Democratic mayor noted the sense of urgency the United States is in as she encouraged everyone to cast their vote and let their voices be heard.
“Let’s stand up for our children, our children’s children, and for this great democracy that our ancestors worked to build, and let’s vote,” she said, as she stressed the importance of electing leaders like “Joe Biden and Kamala Harris—people of honor and integrity, who hold justice close to their hearts.”
Lance-Bottoms later added, “We cannot wait for some other time, some other place, some other heroes. We must be the heroes of our generation, because we, too, are America!”