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Letters to the Editor: How NBA players can restore Florida ex-felons’ right to vote

NBA
An empty court and bench are shown following the scheduled start time of a playoff game between the Orlando Magic and the Milwaukee Bucks on Aug. 26.
(Associated Press)

To the editor: Police shootings of unarmed Black men and women have spawned both peaceful demonstrations and less peaceful riots — and now vigilante killings. Major sports athletes have spoken out and rallied team members to their cause. (“Slogans and T-shirts aren’t working. The NBA players’ strike was the most powerful message they could send,” editorial, Aug. 27)

Last week, professional athletes refused to play in games to draw attention to the lack of progress in addressing the underlying causes of the shootings. I fear some people will simply shun the boycotting teams in anger.

As an alternative to boycotts, I suggest that NBA team members pool their financial resources and purchase the voting rights of Florida’s ex-felons. A statewide ballot measure passed in 2018 restored their voting rights, but this action was subsequently subverted when the state Legislature enacted a law requiring these individuals to pay all outstanding penalties before regaining their franchise.

I suggest the athletes simply pay Florida what is owed. If the state refuses this offer, then the athletes can consider abandoning the Florida “bubble” in which they live and play.

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Todd Collart, Ventura

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To the editor: Black Americans have set an example for all people through their generosity of spirit, their capacity to forgive, their forbearance in the face of racism, subtle and horribly violent, and with their capacity to love.

My white grandfather, born in 1879 and living in Virginia his whole life, said this to me in 1964 as riots broke out in cities across the United States: “Black people have been so patient, for so long. I would not have been so patient.”

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He understood that there is a breaking point for everyone. It is not fair to punch someone time after time, then become indignant when that person finally punches back. The fact is no group has been as peaceful in the face of abuse as the African American community.

The chaos that needs to be stopped is the chaos directed at Black citizens.

Ann Kindberg, Sherman Oaks


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