Give Us the Ballot

Give Us the Ballot

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Description

This original relief print is small in size (3″ x 4″), but mighty in message.  It comes to you in an 8″ x 10″ black wooden frame with white mat.  The work is part of Hope McMath’s #100DaysofHope2018 series, that involves Hope creating a work of art everyday, reflecting on the historic moments, political events, and personal reflections that dominated the final months of 2018 and early 2019.

Today is the day that Amendment 4 becomes real, restoring voting rights to more than 1 million people who are former felons in the state of Florida. It is a day of CELEBRATION as antiquated policies are reversed. It is also a day to commit to remaining vigilant as there will be attempts, even by our new Governor, to limit these rights despite the overwhelming will of the voters. And our need to stay aware and ready goes far beyond the boundaries of Florida, as we saw across the nation during the midterm elections, especially for people of color and members of First Nations.

It is also an appropriate day to breathe in the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., spoken during an early march on Washington in May 1957, years before “I Have a Dream”. This is just a segment of his powerful speech…

“Give us the ballot, and we will no longer have to worry the federal government about our basic rights.

Give us the ballot, and we will no longer plead to the federal government for passage of an anti-lynching law; we will by the power of our vote write the law on the statute books of the South and bring an end to the dastardly acts of the hooded perpetrators of violence.

Give us the ballot, and we will transform the salient misdeeds of bloodthirsty mobs into the calculated good deeds of orderly citizens.

Give us the ballot, and we will fill our legislative halls with men of goodwill and send to the sacred halls of Congress men who will not sign a ‘Southern Manifesto’ because of their devotion to the manifesto of justice.

Give us the ballot, and we will place judges on the benches of the South who will do justly and love mercy, and we will place at the head of the southern states governors who will, who have felt not only the tang of the human, but the glow of the Divine.”

About the Series
“I will give myself time and creative space each and everyday to reflect on the issues that matter to me most as I look for hope. And this isn’t a blind hope of unfettered optimism, but a hope that is based in truth, understanding, love, equity, and the actions that will bring a brighter future,” says Hope McMath.  “Who knows what each day will bring (which reflects the general climate we find ourselves in)…images, words, my thoughts, beauty, anger, fear, and the wisdom of others. They will all be in my favorite medium of relief printmaking and will be more about process than product. I love carving and printing, but don’t give enough time to it.  My HOPE is to find joy and meaning in the challenge of making a print everyday and to find some sanity in this season of chaos. I also HOPE that by posting them I will spin some thoughts and motivation into the world, and maybe spark some dialogue and action.”

Each work is printed in a limited edition of 10.  The first of each edition of 100 works can be seen at Yellow House.