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Entertainment Directors Guild Leaders Condemn Georgia’s “Voter Suppression Law”

06:00  08 april  2021
06:00  08 april  2021 Source:   deadline.com

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Even though Georgia ’ s recently-signed election integrity law applies to everyone in the state and even has overwhelming support among black voters, more than 70 black business executives released a joint statement on Wednesday urging corporations to publicly oppose what they describe as a kind of voter suppression . “And as African-American executives in corporate America, what we were saying is we want corporate America to understand that, and we want them to work with us.” Frazier said he began to pay attention to the situation in Georgia after Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed the bill into law .

When Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed a hastily passed voter suppression law that many are calling the new, new Jim Crow on Thursday night, surrounded by a half-dozen white men, he did so in front of a painting of a plantation where more than 100 Black people had been enslaved. The portrait of the plantation was the starkest reminder of Georgia ’ s history of white racism that spans slavery, Jim Crow segregation, the rebirth of the modern Ku Klux Klan, and today’ s voter purges targeting Black and brown voters — but it wasn’t the only one. At the very moment that Kemp was signing the law with his

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EXCLUSIVE: Leaders of the Directors Guild of America have sent a direct appeal to Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, urging him to withdraw his support for the state’s restrictive new voting law, saying it “threatens to undermine the pillar of our democracy – the right to vote.” The 18,000-member guild has more than 400 members who reside in the state, which is one of the main centers for film and TV production.

“As a leading voice representing creative workers in the industry, we are compelled to denounce SB 202, which will disenfranchise our members, and disproportionately impact our members of color, and millions of other hardworking Georgians,” DGA president Thomas Schlamme and national executive director Russell Hollander wrote in a letter sent to Kemp on Monday. “We urge you to reconsider your support for this misguided law and to make every effort to unwind its restrictions before it takes full effect on July 1st.”

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Latest TV News. Walter Olkewicz Dies: Character Actor In 'Twin Peaks' And 'Grace Under Fire' Was 72. Directors Guild Leaders Condemn Georgia ' s " Voter Suppression Law ".

Georgia has been infamous for suppressing votes for years. The issue was widely debated during their last gubernatorial race when the state tried to limit Black votes for Stacey Abrams. Abrams has since been fighting against voter suppression and helped determine the outcome in the latest presidential and Senate races. I’m glad to see @Delta reverse their position on Georgia ’ s voter suppression law , but until they back it up with some action, instead of zero-risk backtracking after it’s already signed into law, I still won’t be flying with them when I can safely fly.

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SAG-AFTRA, the WGA East and WGA West, and the Producers Guild have also issued statements in opposition to the law – none more strongly worded than the DGA’s.

“Our members, like other working people in the labor movement, have a voice on the job through the DGA,” Schlamme and Hollander told the governor. “But we must also have a voice in our government through the right to vote. We stand in solidarity with the other unions, corporations and individuals that have spoken out in protest to SB 202. We support the fight for free and fair elections in Georgia and elsewhere.”

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The WGA came out today in opposition to Georgia ’ s new voter - suppression law , suggesting that the state’s booming film and television industry might suffer if it’s allowed to stand. Supporters of the law say it’s designed to prevent voter fraud. “The WGA and its members do not decide whether film and TV projects are produced in Georgia ,” WGA West president Together we stand in opposition to all efforts to suppress the vote, including this regressive new law. If Georgia wants to benefit from the thousands of good jobs our industry brings to the state, it cannot attack the democratic rights of its own people.”

Still, Georgia — whose own Republican election officials vocally defended the integrity of the vote there — rushed to pass laws that critics believe make voting more difficult for minorities. Dwyane Wade on the TNT Postgame Show last week eloquently expressed why the law is so objectionable to people of color. Delta CEO Ed Bastian said in a memo to employees that, “The entire rationale for this bill was based on a lie: that there was widespread voter fraud in Georgia in the 2020 elections.”

The new law, SB 202, includes strict new voter-ID requirements for absentee voters; prohibits election officials from mailing absentee ballot applications to all voters; sharply limits the number of ballot drop boxes; and makes it illegal to offer food or water to citizens waiting in line to vote. Supporters of the law say it’s designed to prevent voter fraud. Opponents call it voter suppression. President Joe Biden has called it “an atrocity” and “Jim Crow in the 21st century.”

Here’s the full text of the DGA letter, which was obtained by Deadline:

April 5, 2021

The Honorable Brian Kemp

Governor

206 Washington Street

Suite 203, State Capitol

Atlanta, GA 30334

Dear Governor Kemp:

On behalf of the more than 18,000 members of the Directors Guild of America (DGA), including more than 400 who make their home in Georgia, and hundreds more who choose Georgia as the location for their film and television projects, we write to condemn the voter suppression law Senate Bill 202, which threatens to undermine the pillar of our democracy – the right to vote. President Biden has referred to the law both as an “atrocity” and as a modern-day version of Jim Crow.

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“These efforts by Republicans, in Georgia and across the country, to suppress the vote are a threat to our sacred right as Americans to lift our voices and participate in our democracy. These laws echo a dark chapter of Georgia ’ s history – but make no mistake, we will not go back. “This isn’t just happening in Georgia . There are today over 250 voter suppression bills proposed in state legislatures across the country, making this a concerted Republican effort to disenfranchise voters across the country.

Trump: Georgia voting law doesn't go far enough. "Boycott all of the woke companies that don’t want Voter I.D. and Free and Fair Elections," he concluded. The big picture: Other high-ranking members of the Republican establishment have also spoken out against the backlash to the law . On Monday Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) accused corporations taking a stand against the law of employing "economic blackmail."

The DGA is a labor organization that represents the creative and economic rights of directors and members of the directorial team working in film, television, commercials, documentaries, news, sports, and new media. The DGA has long been a supporter of the Georgia Entertainment Industry Investment Act that has driven increased motion picture and television production in the state in recent years, spurring economic activity that supports 44,070 jobs and more than $3.64 billion in wages. However, as a leading voice representing creative workers in the industry, we are compelled to denounce SB 202, which will disenfranchise our members, and disproportionately impact our members of color, and millions of other hardworking Georgians.

Our jobs involve long hours (often 12 hours or more a day) and frequent weekend work. They take us to sound stages and shooting locations across county lines as well as international borders, on assignments that may last up to a year or more. Because of our arduous work schedules, our members have a particular need to avail themselves of early and absentee voting. And they will be particularly at risk of the new law’s limitations on ballot drop boxes, early voting in run-offs, and absentee voting.

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We vehemently reject the notion that making it harder to vote is consistent with America’s democratic values. SB 202 revives discredited practices intended to suppress the voice of Black people and other people of color that were so common in the days before the landmark Voting Rights Act, such as allowing for unlimited challenges to a voter’s registration – a notorious tactic used to racially profile and intimidate voters of color.

SB 202 will clearly suppress the vote in Georgia. For example, in the racially diverse Atlanta metro area where many of our members of color live, the number of registered voters far exceeds the availability of polling places. Voting lines have been particularly long in nine Atlanta area counties with large Black populations (Fulton, Gwinnett, Forsyth, DeKalb, Cobb, Hall, Cherokee, Henry and Clayton), which include nearly half of Georgia’s active voters but only 38% of the polling places. To provide too few polling places, and then to impose new restrictions on early and absentee voting, is a choice to burden the right to vote – a burden which falls disproportionately on Georgia’s Black voters and other voters of color.

Our members, like other working people in the labor movement, have a voice on the job through the DGA. But we must also have a voice in our government through the right to vote. We stand in solidarity with the other unions, corporations and individuals that have spoken out in protest to SB 202. We support the fight for free and fair elections in Georgia and elsewhere.

We urge you to reconsider your support for this misguided law and to make every effort to unwind its restrictions before it takes full effect on July 1st.

Sincerely,

Thomas Schlamme Russell Hollander

President National Executive Director

Directors Guild of America Directors Guild of America


Video: Georgia gov. not 'backing down' amid voting law protests (Reuters)

Colbert Imagines How Less Moral Soda Brands Could Capitalize on GOP Coke Boycott (Video) .
On Tuesday's "The Late Show," Stephen Colbert poked fun at the histrionic calls from Republicans to boycott corporations like Coca-Cola with a fake ad imagining how a Soda company without any morals could totally take advantage of the whole situation. In case you're just catching up, at the end of March Republicans in Georgia imposed restrictive new voter suppression laws that dramatically limit early voting access and mail-in voting, gives the Republican-controlled state legislature new powers to effectively overrule local election boards if it disagrees with the outcome, and also makes it a crime to give people waiting in line food and water.

usr: 0
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