As an artist and human being, I’ve been observing and analyzing human behavior during the COVID-19 pandemic. The battle between profits and humanity continues. What are our values? The gig economy without benefits, healthcare system failures, unemployment rate increasing, and other collapses are unacceptable. Let’s work together as a community to reject the “normal” and time to rebuild society that reflects equality, justice, and truth!
In the past, America passed signature programs during challenging times. Social Security Administration: “Many of the federal and state programs that provide income security to U.S. families have their roots in the Social Security Act (the Act) of 1935. This Act provided for unemployment insurance, old-age insurance, and means-tested welfare programs. The Great Depression was clearly a catalyst for the Social Security Act of 1935, and some of its provisions—notably the means-tested programs—were intended to offer immediate relief to families. However, the old-age insurance program—the precursor to today’s Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance, or Social Security, program—was not designed specifically to deal with the economic crisis of that era. Indeed, monthly benefit payments, under the original Act, were not scheduled to begin until 1942. In addition, from the beginning, the Social Security program has embodied social insurance principles that were widely discussed even before the onset of the Great Depression.”
The shelter-in-place continues to inspire artworks reflecting current events. I VOTED description: My art practice investigates symbols of influence and power that impact perception. Due to COVID-19 and a compromised immune system, I ordered face masks from a dental supply company in Texas. Recently, a Supreme Court ruling forced Wisconsin residents to risk lives for the right to vote during a pandemic. With the upcoming presidential election, a proposed voting by mail national initiative would protect citizen’s health and be a deterrent to cyber attacks along with foreign election interference. Our dear leader Trump falsely decries vote-by-mail as fraud he, Pence, and cabinet members voted absentee in the 2018 midterm elections. A face mask with “I VOTED TODAY” stickers predict the future fate of America: previous generations died for the right to vote and the only option to end the reign of terror is to participate in democracy.
Mark Pocan, U.S. House of Representative of Wisconsin in Newsweek: “We still don’t know the results of Tuesday’s election, but we know Wisconsin’s democracy suffered a major blow this week. Republicans in the state legislature built upon a decade-long fight in Wisconsin to suppress the voice of voters—especially voters of color—ensuring that anyone who took shelter-in-place seriously would not vote on Tuesday. But if nothing else, our state should serve as a turning point for the nation. This can never happen again. This pandemic has no specific end date. While we want it to be over as soon as possible, we need to prepare for what happens when it isn’t. It’s an election year, and no one should have to choose between their health and their vote. Our job is to ensure every person’s ability to vote is protected. The only way to do that is with nationwide vote-by-mail available to voters in every state and territory in the United States. Anything less is a failure of our democracy.”
U.S. House of Representative House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be advocating for a national voting by mail for the November election in the next pandemic response plan/package. This is important and common sense. There’s already been pushback by groups that fear the idea of all citizens voting. Imagine a world post COVID-19 with universal healthcare and voting for all…