The Discordant History of the Ongoing Fight to Give Every U.S. Citizen 18 or Older the Right to Vote

In a highly prescient Ted Ed lesson from 2013, written by educator Nicki Beaman Griffin and animated by Flaming Medusa Studios, narrator Addison Anderson tells of the very ugly history around the ongoing fight to give every United States citizen over the age of 18 the right to vote, as documented in the 15th, 19th and 26th Amendments to the United States Constitution. Griffin also explains what happened in the first Presidential election, how the right to vote expanded over time, the tacts some groups have taken to deny some citizens of their rights and the uprising of new generations asking very good questions.

After World War II, many Americans began to question the state of U.S. democracy. How could a nation that fought for freedom and human rights abroad come home and deny suffrage based on race? The modern civil rights movement began in the 1940s with those questions in mind.After years of sacrifice, bloodshed, and pain, the United States passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965, finally eliminating restrictions such as literacy tests and protecting the voting rights promised under the 15th Amendment to the Constitution.

While so many people fought, and are still fighting, very hard for the right to vote, it’s very easy to register online to vote.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.