Story at a glance:
- Black church leaders are boycotting the Masters Tournament in Georgia.
- The Masters Tournament takes place in Augusta National from April 8-11.
- The House Bill 531 is being compared to Jim Crow-era laws, while Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp says supporters of the bill will “not be silenced."
The African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME) and similar religious Black groups call for a boycott of the Masters golf tournament in response to controversial election law passed in Georgia.
House Bill 531 is a Republican-led effort to make voters have required identification for absentee ballots, angering some civil rights activists.
Just like MLB's All-Star Game, originally slated to be in Georgia until protesters pressured the league, AME Bishop Reginald Jackson is leading a boycott of Coca-Cola, Delta, Home Depot and other Atlanta-based corporations.
The Masters tournament is set to take place in Augusta National from April 8 to 11.
On Wednesday, Jackson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he hopes these companies side with him and fellow civil rights activist groups like the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), saying the HB531 is “an attempt to turn back time to Jim Crow.”
"Georgia's new law restricting voting access is designed to turn back the clock on civil rights, and return Black and poor and already disenfranchised voters in Georgia to second class citizens," NBJC executive director David J. Johns told Golfweek. "This is an unacceptable attack on our democracy and companies that operate in Georgia must speak out against this restrictive law."
In addition to requiring an ID, it prohibits people from handing out water at the poll line.
“No person shall solicit votes in any manner or by any means or method, nor shall any person distribute or display any campaign material, nor shall any person give, offer to give, or participate in the giving of any money or gifts, including, but not limited to, food and drink, to an elector,” the bill reportedly states.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) continues to defend the new law. “I want to be clear: I will not be backing down from this fight. We will not be intimidated, and we will also not be silenced,” Kemp said.
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