How would football be played after Republicans rig the rules with voter suppression-like tactics? Check this satire.
Football is a game of strength, skill and strategy. Impartial umpires, linesmen and scorekeepers manage the game. Elections, similarly are a contest of between candidates with nonpartisan election officials to make sure the election is fair and votes are counted accurately.
Changing the rules and having your own umpires is wrong in football and having partisan election officials wrong in elections. We don’t accept cheating in football. Why should voter suppression and partisan election officials be tolerated in elections?
This infographic shows what football might look like after Republicans rig football rules to ensure a win.
Republican voter suppression tactics applied to football
Make it harder for the other team
Elections: Republicans have mastered the art of removing ballot boxes, banning vote-by-mail and making it difficult to get the IDs needed to vote.
Football: Have a regular goal post for your team and a much smaller goal for your opponents. This makes it much harder for the other team to score a goal.
Bring your own umpire
Elections: Republicans are “Inserting partisan actors into election administration” – ABC News
Football: Republicans would install their own umpires, linesmen and score keepers to manage the football game. Plays would be reviewed by Republican appointed judges in the review board.
Use racism to get an unfair advantage
Elections: “The framers enshrined the three-fifths clause in the Constitution. This set the census value of a slave as 60 percent of the value of a free person.” Theodore R. Johnson, Brennan Center Center.
Football: In football this could be applied to only award players of color 3/5ths of the points they score. A touchdown in that case would be 4.2 points for the opposing team instead of the regular 7 points.
Manipulate the media coverage
Elections: Republicans and right wing groups spread voting misinfo through FOX and Facebook. “Charlie Kirk and Fox News host Sean Hannity who ensured that Judicial Watch’s disinformation reached peak virality. Hannity’s tweet of the report was retweeted almost 2,000 times by his 4.5 million followers, and Kirk’s tweet of the information without any citation was retweeted over 40,000 times to his 15 million followers.” – Mother Jones
Football: Republicans insist that all TV and social media coverage of football games be handled by FOX and Facebook so their team gets only favorable coverage, while the two media platforms make millions from advertising sales.
Eliminate the competition
Elections: Republicans use Cross Check lists to purge the voter rolls of suspected double voters. “But the ugly truth is, the lists are nothing more than racially-loaded lists of common names”. – Greg Palast
Football: Ban good players from the opposing team from the game.
“Colin Kaepernick’s NFL slavery comments on Netflix made waves. If anyone has earned the right to condemn the NFL’s mistreatment of Black players, it’s Colin Kaepernick. Since the end of the 2016-17 season, the NFL has seemingly blackballed the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback for exercising his constitutional right to take a knee during the national anthem and protest police brutality and systemic racism. His peaceful protest was distorted by former President Donald Trump and Commissioner Roger Goodell and enabled by the NFL’s rich, powerful and (mostly) white team owners.
In “Colin in Black and White,” a Netflix miniseries he co-produced with Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Ava DuVernay, Kaepernick provocatively likens the NFL draft to slavery.” – NBC News
Storytelling with a purpose
Saul Alinsky’s Rules For Radicals explains how to organize and get your message heard. This satire on how Republicans might rig football rules applies three of his principles:
- Never go outside the expertise of your people.
- Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It’s almost impossible to counterattack ridicule.
- A good tactic is one your people enjoy.
More people are familiar with the rules of football than complex Republican voter suppression schemes. So explaining voter suppression in the context of football is easier because it starts with a framework that people already know. The satire is designed to be funny with lots of cartoons, and timely with the 2022 SuperBowl approaching. Football is on people’s minds and ranks high in search engine queries.
The infographic was designed in a day with the free Kumu app using cartoons from Cagle Cartoons The QR Code code for the infographic was designed with the free QR Code Generator app. Apply for free help with Kumu for projects related to social justice and voting rights here.
TakeAway: Follow Alinsky’s advice: use examples your audience already understand and humor to make your point.
A little more humor
Ten design tips for persuasive storytelling. BECOME A POLL WORKER case study.
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