Dear Editor:

You think you know a person, then you discover long- forgotten bits of papers that Mama left behind.

I found four voter poll tax receipts dated 1956, 1957, 1958 and 1974. All were from Brownsville, Texas.

Each time my Mama moved she had to reregister to vote and pay poll tax.

Toward the bottom of each receipt, written in small print, is the following: “The sum of one and $75/$100, in payment of Poll Tax for the year shown above. The said taxpayer being duly sworn by me says that the above is current: all of which I certify.” Stamped signature C.H. Holcomb Tax Accessor and Collector.

The receipts also describe the voter. Mama was native-born meaning she was a citizen, Sex: female, Race: white, Age: 39, and a housewife.

She valued her right to vote at her expense. It doesn’t seem like lots of money, but for her it was. The state of Texas will never change. Barriers to the right to vote has always been an issue in Texas.

Sandra Barocio

Moss Beach

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(2) comments

uffish thought

Poll taxes didn't exist in 1974 per the opinion piece. They were a terribly discriminatory tactic, but federal poll taxes were ended in 1964 and were fully abolished at the state and local level in 1966 by the US Supreme Court, with Texas complying. *

Trying to claim, as the headline does, that poll taxes live on 55 years later in some form is silly. No reasoning is offered, it's just thrown out there as if it's a given. As is this:

"The state of Texas will never change. Barriers to the right to vote has always been an issue in Texas."

If you have a point to make, at least tell us what you're talking about and back it up with some facts, please.

* https://www.thestoryoftexas.com/discover/artifacts/poster-have-you-paid-that-poll-tax

John Charles Ullom

When states close poling sites in poor and rural counties forcing long drives, it costs more to vote: -- https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/mar/02/texas-polling-sites-closures-voting

When states ban providing water to seniors who are stuck in a long line of voters, that is a back door polling tax: -- https://www.businessinsider.com/ga-voting-law-bans-volunteers-from-delivering-food-water-to-voters-2021-3

uffish, do you really believe that a simple ban on Poll Taxes changed the hearts of people who used poll taxes as a method to discourage people of color and poverty from voting? -- https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-politics/voter-suppression-texas-history/

Or do you think folks with the same hateful intent haven't found other ways of discouraging people of color and poverty from voting?

No doubt that examples of the Left doing some of this ugliness can be found: -- https://www.foxnews.com/politics/new-black-panthers-back-at-philly-voting-site

It is sad. But we live in a nation where close to 40% of the electorate believes the lie that Biden stole the election and that Obama is the Islamo Marxist Kenyan result of a sex between Satan and a hyena. No wonder they are voting for bills that address their fears.

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