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Past

Our nation was founded on the ideals of equality, freedom and the pursuit of happiness.  At the time of our founding the understanding and application of these concepts was extended only to those in power which meant almost exclusively white Protestant landowning men.  Access to the ballot was limited and strictly controlled so that government would operate for the benefit of the powerful few, and at great cost to many.  

It is easy and right to uphold the ideals of our nation, but to look at only the promise and not the reality of their implementation is to ignore the pain, suffering and struggle of those who did not share in the power or prosperity of those ideals.  To ignore the genocide of Native people, the crippling legacy of slavery, or the brutality of patriarchy, sexism and classism is to deny our own truth.

Take the challenge and explore the stories of how people have dealt with oppression and struggled to gain and maintain access to the ballot and to the American promise: a government by the people and for the people.