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McNiel on politics

Many people still don't know which party to vote for -- Democrat or Republican.

A lot of civil unrest is going on because of various Black Lives Mater movements because police officers are shooting and killing black men and women and are not being arrested and charged and jailed in a timely manner, even when there is video evidence of the crime.

I read a paper explaining passing the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution. I wonder why I didn't get taught any of this information when I was in school.

Per my own research, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on Sept. 22, 1862. However, it was not formally approved by Congress until Jan. 31, 1865. Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican president.

The 13th Amendment abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime. The amendment was passed by Congress on Jan. 31, 1865, and ratified by the required 27 of the then 36 states on Dec. 6, 1865, and proclaimed on Dec. 18, after Abraham Lincoln was assasinated in April of 1865.

The Senate passed it on April 8, 1864, and the House passed it on Jan. 31, 1865. All of the 118 Republicans voted for the amendment, but a mere 19 of 82 Democrats voted for it.

The 14th Amendment, which was ratified three years later in 1868, granted citizenship to all persons born or naturalized in the U.S., including former slaves, and guaranteed all citizens "equal protection of the laws."

The 15th Amendment was ratified Feb. 3, 1870, and reads: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude."

The House passed the 15th Amendment with 143 Republican and one Conservative Republican votes of "Yes"; three Republican, 39 Democrat, one Independent Republican and one Conservative votes of "No"; and 26 Republican, eight Democrat and one Independent Republican not voting. The Senate passed the amendment with a vote of 39 Republican votes of "Yea" and 8 Democrat and 5 Republican votes of "Nay". 13 Republicans and 1 Democrat not voting.

The Republicans primarily want to support the people while the Democrats primarily want to control the people. Now that you see the numbers, which party will you vote for?

Boyd B. McNiel

Pea Ridge, Ark.`

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