As citizens, we have the right to choose the people who represent us. But in some cases, this is not always the case. In Texas, cities with a population of at least 100,000 people include Austin, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston and San Antonio. When Texas Republicans redrew their state's congressional map earlier this year, they took what had been one of the most competitive and politically interesting maps in the country and, by discriminating against rapidly growing racial and ethnic minorities, transformed it into one of the most boring and least dynamic.
Political manipulation, which the courts have considered legal, allows politicians to choose their voters; in essence, planting districts with like-minded voters and creating safe districts that minimize competition, encourage elected officials to pay less attention to the interests of political minorities, and institutionalizes gridlock. Gerrymandering has been a part of Texas politics since the early 19th century. The term was coined in 1812 when Massachusetts Governor Elbridge Gerry signed a bill that created a district shaped like a salamander. This district was designed to give an advantage to Gerry's political party.
Since then, gerrymandering has been used by both parties to gain an advantage in elections. In recent years, public opinion on key gerrymandering reforms has changed significantly in Fort Worth. A 2018 poll conducted by the University of Texas found that nearly two-thirds of Fort Worth residents supported changing the way congressional districts are drawn. This was a significant increase from previous polls which showed that only about half of Fort Worth residents supported such reforms.
The shift in public opinion can be attributed to several factors. First, there has been an increase in awareness about gerrymandering and its effects on elections. People are becoming more aware of how gerrymandering can be used to manipulate elections and how it can lead to unfair representation. Second, there has been an increase in activism around gerrymandering reform.
Activists have been working hard to raise awareness about gerrymandering and its effects on elections and to push for reforms that will ensure fairer elections. Finally, there has been an increase in media coverage of gerrymandering and its effects on elections. This increased coverage has helped to spread awareness about gerrymandering and its effects on elections and has helped to build support for reform efforts. The shift in public opinion on gerrymandering reforms is an encouraging sign for those who are fighting for fairer elections in Fort Worth and across Texas.
It shows that citizens are becoming more aware of the issue and are willing to take action to ensure that their voices are heard. As more citizens become aware of gerrymandering and its effects on elections, it is likely that public opinion will continue to shift in favor of reform.