Culture

She Wanted Her Quinces Party To Be Special So She Added Voter Registration To Fight For Her Future

If you’re a Latina, you probably spent years dreaming of your quinceañera. Questions of the song you’ll come out to, what your dress will look like, and who will escort you into womanhood dance around so many of our heads until the moment we hit the actual dance floor.

Chances are, however, you never considered how to incorporate the current political sphere, freedom and voting rights to your big day.

Quinceañera Aleida Ramos decided to have an innovative addition to her recent quince: voter registration.

Twitter / @NBCNews

On the Houstonian’s big day, she invited Jolt Initiative — the Latinx Youth Advocacy group. Their goal is to register as many Latinx voters as possible. For Ramos’ party, the organization set up Poder Quince booths to assist guests with voter registration.

In between thanking friends and family and celebrating her quince, Ramos encouraged guests to visit the Poder Quince booths. Her father, Marco Ramos, Jr, joined in on urging guests to register to vote. The pair focused on the impact that the Latinx vote can make in the 2020 election and elections to come.

Community was a big focus of this push. Ramos’ motivation for inviting Jolt Initiative was to pay back the community that has supported her and invested in her these past 15 years. Undoubtedly, even this small gesture can have huge outcomes.

“Our vote ensures we continue to protect our community and those who matter to us most,” the quinceañera told her party goers.

With Poder Quince, Jolt has made it their goal to reach potential Latinx voters through quinceañeras.

Twitter / @joltinitiative

The Texas-based advocacy group started their Poder Quince initiative in May of 2019. Thanks to the huge Latinx population, quinceañeras have become mainstream in the Lone Star State. By Jolt’s estimation, around 50,000 quinces are held each year.

With this in mind, these quinceañeras prove to be an untapped resource to connect with Latinx voters. Jolt — which is a non-profit association — recognizes that in order to mobilize a community, we need to be part of the community. Their presence at quinceañeras helps accomplish this.

Ramos’ quince is the first in Harris County to invite Jolt Initiative.

Twitter / @NBCNews

Harris County — which includes the city of Houston — has the second largest Latinx population in the country. At over 2 Million, it’s second only to Los Angels’ nearly 5 Million Latinx population.

Harris County set a new historic turn out record during the 2018 elections — no doubt helped by their large Latinx and Millennial vote. This turnout officially changed the county blue in the traditionally red state.

According to Jolt’s spokesman, Antonio Arellano, Texas is a crucial focus for voter turn out.

As he shared with NBC News, “That’s why we are so focused on energizing the Latino vote in Houston. The Latino vote lives here, and we have to mobilize them and there is so much riding on them.”

While Ramos is still too young to vote, she was intrigued by the other quinceañeras who welcomed Jolt to their celebrations.

NBC News

Ramos shared with NBC News, “I liked their stories and what they said about everything. I wanted to do something that would help us — trying to make a difference in things for our community. It inspired me.”

Her father — who doesn’t consider himself political — has voted in every election since he was 18. His example also heavily influenced Ramos’ decision to incorporate Jolt into her quince.

Ramos shared with NBC News the wisdom that her dad has passed on to her.

“My dad tells me I have to be educated to vote and have to know what I’m voting for and about the person,” she explained. “When people ask you why you are for that person, you don’t stutter. You know because you are educated.”

Jolt also provided a photo booth for the quinceañera and her guests.

NBC News

Guests of Ramos’ quince reported that they enjoyed the presence of Jolt at the celebration. Younger guests had fun with the props and Instagram-able opportunities. Similarly, voting-aged guests appreciated the chance to register and update their personal information.

Ultimately, it was a quince that her guests won’t soon forget. Altogether, it might make a difference in Ramos’ community and ultimately our own.

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These Dancers Want To Make Sure That You Get Your Booty Straight To The Polls

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These Dancers Want To Make Sure That You Get Your Booty Straight To The Polls

Get Your Booty To The Poll / Facebook

These are wild times, y’all. We are facing the election of our lifetime and on the line is the rights of millions and the dignity of our nation. This means that everyone is getting mobilized and active to make sure that voters come out in full force on Nov. 3. One ad is catching everyone’s attention.

Get Your Booty To The Poll is using pole dancing to get people to do their duty and vote.

Director Angela Barnes wanted to do something that would catch everyone’s attention during the pandemic and to remind them to vote. Her idea was to get some of the best exotic dancers from Atlanta’s best gentlemen’s clubs to do a PSA about voting. After all, we have all been told several times that “sex sells.”

The ad is getting people talking.

Some people are excited to see the ad targeting a specific group of people to vote. Others are offended that women are being objected in order to make the PSA. However, one this is for sure, the 3.4 million viewers on the tweet shows that the ad is getting everyone’s attention.

The Barnes wanted to target Black southern men, specifically in Georgia.

I wrote and directed a PSA enlisting Atlanta's finest pole dancers to encourage Black voters, specifically Black male…

Posted by Angela Barnes on Wednesday, August 12, 2020

According to her Facebook post, the video is intended to make sure that Black men in the south go out and vote. One key element in the video that the director points out is the use of ballots as dollar bills on the stage. That’s right. The cast and crew used ballots in place of dollar bills to really sell the idea of getting out to the polls to vote.

Some people are not convinced that the people who are mad are really mad.

It is a very creative way to get people’s attention, especially for voting. There are voting PSAs from almost every organization targeting almost every community. This one is clearly designed with specific people in mind and it seems to be doing its job. This is the viral content voting PSAs wish to be, tbh.

Barnes and the dancers are definitely doing their part to remind you to vote so do your part and get to the polls to vote (or vote by mail-in ballot).

The U.S. is facing a tough and very important election. The Trump administration is fighting to secure another term while Democrats are doing everything in their power to stop them. Communities of color have been the target of some of the administration’s most hateful and damaging legislation.

Get ready to vote. Register your friends. Bring them to the polls. The general election is on Nov. 3 and it is up to all of us to vote to see the policies we want.

READ: As Trump Does All He Can To Sabotage Mail-In Voting, He And Melania Request Mail-In Ballots

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Florida AG Calls For Investigation Into Mike Bloomberg After He Paid Fines For Felons To Vote

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Florida AG Calls For Investigation Into Mike Bloomberg After He Paid Fines For Felons To Vote

Mike Bloomberg / Flickr

Mike Bloomberg promised during his campaign that he would help the Democratic nominee get elected. The former mayor of New York City is following through on his promise and his first focus is on Florida.

Former Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg is spending money to help get Joe Biden elected.

During the 2020 campaign, Mike Bloomberg promised to spend his money and use his time to help elect the Democratic nominee. Many at the time were skeptical at the claim but Bloomberg is following through. The philanthropist and businessman is spending millions to advance his cause in Florida.

This is just the beginning of Bloomberg’s work in Florida to defeat President Trump. The New York politician has pledged to spend $100 million to help Biden win Florida. This includes ad buys and other ways to promote Biden within the Sunshine State.

Bloomberg recently raised $16 million to help get felons their right to vote back.

In 2018, Floridian voted in favor of reinstating the voting right of former felons who served their time. Governor Ron DeSantis immediately went to work stopping the voters’ choice and set up roadblocks to prevent former felons from voting. One of those roadblocks was making former felons pay all of their fines and fees before getting their right to vote back.

Bloomberg was able to raise enough money to pay off the fines and fees for 31,000 former felons in Florida. There are more than 1 million currently trying to get their right to vote back. Part of the problem with the fines and fees is that the state of Florida is not compelled to tell felons how to pay the fees nor that they have the fees.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody is calling for an investigation.

Moody, a Republican elected in 2018, called for an investigation into Bloomberg’s donation to restore the voting rights of thousands. The investigation is designed to see if Bloomberg violated any election laws.

“Today, I sent a letter to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the Federal Bureau of Investigation into potential violations of election laws,” Moody said in a statement on Wednesday. “And I have instructed the Statewide Prosecutor to work with law enforcement and any Statewide Grand Jury that the Governor may call.”

People want Bloomberg to do the same in other states.

Bloomberg committed to helping the Democrats win the White House in 2020 because of damage created by the Trump administration. Bloomberg’s sudden involvement in Florida highlights Bloomberg’s willingness to follow up on his word. Bloomberg’s initiative helped the felons with less than $1,500 in penalty fees and had already applied for their voting rights to be restored.

Remember, your vote is your voice. Make sure you are registered to vote and get your friends registered too. Go to IWillVote.com or VoyaVotar.com and text TODOS to 30330 today to learn what choices you have to vote in your community and get information on where and when to vote.

READ: Joe Biden And President Donald Trump Are Battling It Out For Florida’s Crucial Latino Vote

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