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Draw a line around? Then circle right below, man the deviousness in this is beyond disturbing.


Sounds like you don't get to vote


“Idiot drew a circle, and not a line around the letter or number!!! That’s it, voting rights revoked.” “Upon completion of this form, we’ll need you to touch your nose, pat your head, and rub your belly all at once. If you cannot, the form is invalid and you’ll have to try again in 4 years.”


I seriously don't get the first question. Draw a line around the letter or number of this sentence? What the hell does that even mean.


Im assuming they mean the number as in the 1. on the side? Im not sure tbh


That's what I would have done, I'm not at all sure it was the correct answer though. I'm assuming it's an arbitrary way of reducing the number of legitimate black voters. "You asked for clarification, failed." "You didn't ask for assistance but were intimidated by the Caucasian giving the test, failed." "You asked for clarification but did me some favour... Let me help you then hold it against you forever." I'm sure there were some helpful people somewhere, just seems to have been a rare thing.


Oh i’m 100% sure they made this test purposely confusing.


I assume that because it's the first question, the number of the line is the 1. But that's the thing, it's an assumption. They get to decide the answer as they mark it...


And the number is also not part of the actual sentence, so it makes no sense. This is actually disgusting.


Also the word "a" by itself is a letter!


I think you circle the "1". All the questions are horribly written, presumably intentionally designed for people to misinterpret what they're asking for. Draw a line from 2 to 4 is ridiculous.


2 to 5 no vote for u


I assumed it was the number 1, as in it was question 1? But shit, I definitely could be wrong


Do they mean like a disconnected circle or a swirly shape?


It's intentionally ambiguous; so they can claim you got it wrong no matter what if they want to fail you specifically.


“Sir, tell me who you plan to be voting for and I will review your test to determine if you completed it correctly.”


More like “boy, let me see the color of your skin and I’ll determine if you completed your test correctly.”


That’s the point; it’s open to interpretation so even if you get it right, someone can choose that you got it wrong!


Draws square/octagon.. I’m sorry sir, the test clearly states “line” singular. Not “lineS” plural. Have a nice day! /s




...wow, it's almost as if they didn't want black people to pass this test!


After slavery ended some racist politicians didn’t want black people to live in America at all (Talking about the Back-to-Africa Movement in particular.)


they still dont. see texas’ recent voting bill.


Never said racist politicians stopped existing lol


And they're still pulling this type of shit today (in a bit of a sneakier manner). Stuff like closing polling locations in low income neighborhoods (which should get you [and honestly, the whole party responsible] barred from democratic politics for life), the war on mail in voting (aka, lets make people physically go to the polls after closing every other physical location down for months prior due to the pandemic) so that only people who dont care about getting covid get to vote. And even the way that the republicans continued to deny the results of (possibly) the most tightly controlled election in human history (considering the kerfuffle that Trump caused in the LAST election, you know, the one where he didnt win the popular vote, the one that Russia actively digitally attacked and the one that Hillary conceded before the vote were even finished being counted). Honestly the electoral college in general is just a massive form of voter suppression since it gives a relatively small population a huge increase in the value of their individual vote (and the small group of people tend to vote a particular way)


And you have 10 minutes to do this. I'm not gonna lie, I have finished like 15 years of school and I don't think I could do this test in 10 minutes without going back, over and over again trying to figure out what the hell they want me to do. And this is under the threat of one wrong answer and you can't vote.


Guess what? That was just the first page. https://slate.com/human-interest/2013/06/voting-rights-and-the-supreme-court-the-impossible-literacy-test-louisiana-used-to-give-black-voters.html


What the actual fucking fuck!?? What kind of a sadistic motherfucking asshole would create this and tell you you have no chance of failing and only 20 seconds to answer each fucking question!?


It was designed to keep black people from voting.


Should have been given to everyone. It would actually be a pretty interesting experiment to have people do this kind of a test and them tell them what it was used for. Especially if it was given to racists. Would love to see their reaction to this type of a test. Could be marketed as "only 1 in 10 liberals can get this, show them who's boss by finishing it in 10 minutes or less!"


Imagine if in order to vote you first had to complete a basic civics test lol


And poor whites. This is why there is a 5th grade exception. Poor white trash wouldn't be able to prove that either. This was also combined with Louisiana's Grandfather Clause they could also keep out new comers. If your grandfather could vote in LA, then so can you without having to take the test.


Racists. Thats who


A racist one.


>Confused by the phrasing? Unsure what they're asking exactly? Yup that's the point. ---- u/JellyCulture


The 1960s is less than 100 years ago- and people think that this stuff isnt still around in one form or another


The 1960s is barely more than 50 years ago. I think even saying less than 100 makes it seem farther away than it is.


Yep, there are plenty of voter suppression laws being passed today with the politicians claiming it's for "voter integrity" but they know full well it's to make it harder for various marginalized groups to be able to vote.


Of course it's Louisiana.


Confused by the phrasing? Unsure what they're asking exactly? Yup that's the point.


Draw a line around the shortest word in this line.


A line around, but specifically not a circle, since they ask for that in a different way in the next question. In other questions they call it a sentence and not a line.


They make the questions just ambiguous enough that there is more than one way to answer them (correctly). Thus, no matter what the answer, it can always be found to be wrong.


First question is just nonsensical.


Thought about this for a minute because I thought it made no sense. I think because all the questions are number (1-13) they want you to draw a line around the 1.


The '1' is part of the line but I wouldn't say it's part of the sentence.


It's not part of the sentence, but it is the number of the sentence. Now wondering if a line around something can be a circle or not...


But don't circle it. Draw a line around it.


How do you draw a line *around* something? That would be a circle.


A square?


Sorry, that would be 4 lines, not “a line.” No vote for you!


A squirkle.


Don't close the loop completely?


Isn't a line, by definition, straight in a 2d representation? Being the shortest distance between two points and all.


An oval!!!! Not a circle but goes around ….


Correct. And if it were labeled "question a" around the a.


Sorry, we are going to have to remove you from the voting rolls. Good luck next time.


I’d draw a hexagon around the number 1


A hexagon is definitely not a line, it’s 6 lines.


I was like, there is no # here. Is this “how can I be a dick” test?


No kidding. I still don't get what they are asking.




Ohhhhhhh so that's how they suppressed Black voters. They basically made it impossible for them to pass this "test" and thus impossible for them to vote. I felt kind of stupid for struggling with this test, but now it makes sense. It's supposed to be confusing and ambiguously worded to ensure that the person taking it fails.


Duh? What else would be the point of a racially based test?


tl;dr, ​ This guy is illiterate. ​ /s


Cross the first, last alphabet of the longest word in the sentence you and then draw an accurate representation of a blazing flame on top


Draw three circles, one inside the other?


And one wrong answer is a fail. So interpret one wrong and you’re not at a fifth grade level. What a lot of rubbish.


Easy way to get "Did you know 99.8% of the them blacks what was tested couldn't pass a simple 5th grade level test?" as a talking point.


I thought I was dumb cos I had to reread it..


The goal was partly to disqualify as many people as possible but just as important was making the line take longer.


Well I live in Louisiana, and I’m pretty sure that the person/s who wrote this test were indeed illiterate


Damn you may have a point there


My head hurts. Fuck racists. I did well on the LSAT, and the logic games section of that test is hell, but this is harder.


Well that makes me really excited to take the LSAT then.


Haha, well at least you can study for the LSAT. No on can study for this bullshit.


I’m a teacher. I did this with my AP Gov class last year. None could finish it in time. And of course, even if they did finish, there’s no “right” answer. They hated it so much. And that’s when I explained what the VRA did, and how it made things like this go away. Great way to introduce civil rights or how elections work in school.


this would be great to give out at a random time during the school year. the students know you were giving out a quiz, but didnt know it was this one. supereme court? nope, its the surprise voting rights literacy test lesson.


Yup. Was shown this in school. I finished it in time and produced "all" answers, and my teacher used mine to demonstrate how every answer, any answer, could fail you. What surprised him is that I had more answers than he had had prepared, which was kinda neat.


And we want to pretend Critical Race Theory isn’t real.


Damn I don’t know if I could do it in ten if I was under pressure.


It's also only the first of three pages and 30 questions: https://slate.com/human-interest/2013/06/voting-rights-and-the-supreme-court-the-impossible-literacy-test-louisiana-used-to-give-black-voters.html There's "write backwards, forwards", "print the word vote upside down, but in the correct order", "draw five circles that one common inter-locking part." and "Divide a vertical line in two equal parts by bisecting it with a curved horizontal line that is only straight at its spot bisection of the vertical."


What the hell is a "curved horizontal line"?!


I think it's a half circle. Maybe. I definitely wouldn't get to vote. This shit is infuriating.


A line is always straight. Unlike the morality of these test designers.


Also keep in mind that the entire thing was written in such a fashion as to be ambiguous, and the sole determination of what was right and wrong was left up to the local registrar for *each voter.* The other criteria included things such as restricting registration to "citizens of good character" and that voters be well disposed to the good order and happiness of the State of Louisiana and will fully abide by the laws of this state. Literally all of these things were left up to the judgement of the local registrar. In other words, it allowed local registrars to deny anyone they wished the right to vote.


Did it with my students once. One in a class of twenty managed what the class and I felt was a correct (ambiguity aside) test. Sure not native english speakers but that wasn't the problem. I was teaching a class about US political, legal and social history with connection to last election. If anyone wondered why I administered the test.


I'm a 25 year old US citizen, and we were also given this test when I was in 11th grade AP Government. I knew it looked so familiar when I saw it in my feed.


It kinda reminded me of one they gave us in sixth grade history. First instruction was "read everything before doing anything" and the last was "now that you've read everything don't do anything" while the middle was a series of increasingly ridiculous actions (circle the date, say your name out loud, stand up and turn around, etc)


We did this one in 7th grade. Me and Daniel R. were the only two knuckleheads that didn't pay attention to the instructions...


The draw a line under 2 but over 4 to five, starting on 2… what? Can I just start my line under number 2, or do I have to go from the top of 2 and counter clockwise my way around so the line is under the whole thing?


Depends on your skin colour, I think.




I still have no idea with 10.


Last, “T”


That one doesn't specify that's the word is from that sentence, so I would go with A since Louisiana is the first L word on the test, but its also written so that both can and probably would be marked as wrong, which seems to be the point.


I think you’re right. None of the words in that sentence start with “L” because none of the l-words in that sentence are capitalized


That was the one I was struggling with


This was set up for failure…very tricky diction


That and deliberate ambiguity to allow the test giver to fail literally anyone at their discretion. > In the first circle below write the last letter of the first word beginning with "L". The first word of what? First word of the line? That would be the "t" of "last". First word of the entire test? That would be the "a" of "Louisiana".


Exactly my brain was catching a cramp reading this bs


Wrong. The correct answer is, “Be white.”


I thought it meant the first L word in the dictionary. Just goes to show how weird the whole thing is


The verbiage in the tests seems intentionally ambiguous, that way it can be interpreted however the person grading the test wants. What a load of shit. “Draw a line around the number or letter of this sentence”. What the hell does that even mean.


That’s the most confusing question, I have no idea how to answer the very first question. The rest are also intentionally confusing.


They want you to circle the 1. (In some cases, I guess it was sometimes A.) at the beginning of the sentence. Edit: it appears I am not qualified to vote, woe is me lol


The 1. at the beginning is part of the line, but not part of the sentence. You obviously don't have enough education to vote and will be stricken from the record.


Nope, the 1, I’m sure if you circled the period it would be wrong.


Question 5 has me completely lost


Just the first, first letter of the alphabet in the sentence. In this case the (a) in the word alphabet.


Like the other guy said, the first letter of the alphabet is the letter “a”, they’re asking you to circle the first “a” in the sentence. It’s definitely wordy and intentionally confusing though.


It means, "I'm going to mark it wrong if you're black, and correct if you're white."


I doubt many white people were given this test. I'm sure they could "prove" they had completed the 5th grade without taking it.


They also had "grandfathered" voter rights, so if your father/grandfather could vote you don't need to do the test or any of the other absurd requirements.


Wow. That is... not subtle


Now the sons of the people who enforced those tests are tearing up the voting rights act and saying “you can trust us”


And those same states are making it so they can pick where the electors go if they don’t like who actually won the state.


The “1.” Although clearly if they also draw a circle around the punctuation that’s wrong. I think it’s noted elsewhere in this thread but I bet every answer is wrong in some way


I've got a post grad degree and I'm pretty sure I would fail this test.


*Draw a line around...* This can be used to fail anyone. A line can't go around anything (at least not in a Euclidean space). If you circle the correct answer, you fail. If you draw a box around the correct answer, you fail. If you draw a line over, under, or through the correct answer, you fail. If you ask for clarification, you obviously can't read simple instructions and you fail. In short, if they hand you the test and the marker wants you to fail, you fail. Edit: technically I'm wrong on the definition of a line, unless the context is specific to the infinite 1d line of geometry. Needless to say in the tragic context of this test, it's enough to deny a citizen their voting rights.


You're just supposed to draw a straight line then continue it around the back of the page but do it at a slight angle so when you flip the page again the line ends up on the other side of the word. Not sure why all of you are having trouble with this /s


Creative solution, here's your ballot.


> at least not in a Euclidean space luckily I brought a pencil from R’lyeh


Is #10 just “t”? Some of the questions are very poorly worded.


Being poorly worded is part of the point. They were specifically trying to mess people up so that they could "legitimately" deny people they didn't want voting.


Or is it A? It doesn’t specify on that specific line or sentence. The first word on the page to begin with the letter L is at the top. Louisiana.


If you answer "t" you get it wrong, because Louisiana is the first L word, so you should've put "a" If you answer "a" you get it wrong, because last is the first L word in this line/sentence, so you should've put "t" Fun!


And that’s how they deny your vote. Impossible questions.


A lot of people saying it's simple and in this very thread you can see many smart people disagreeing on what you're supposed to do. It's not simple, it's intentionally confusing and poorly written. It was made so you could always argue that you got the answer wrong.


It's also only a one page of 3 that you're supposed to do in 10 minutes total.


pretty sure this was given to the supreme court and when they couldn't do it under 10 minutes they called bs.


“The fundamental cause of the trouble in the modern world today is that the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.”—Bertrand Russell. It's been said by many others in various ways.. but this quote is what springs to mind. If anyone here is confident that they passed this.. then whoa damn that's a scary and dangerous stupid person.


Are you *sure* about those statements you made?


I'm sure that I'll be viewed more positively if I say I'm not. Do I pass?


No vote for you


We took Alabama's literacy test in my high school government class as a example while learning about black suffrage. Not one person passed it.


Source: https://slate.com/human-interest/2013/06/voting-rights-and-the-supreme-court-the-impossible-literacy-test-louisiana-used-to-give-black-voters.html


hol' up, this article shows that the test is actually 3 pages, not just one! all in ten minutes! and the second two pages honestly make even less sense than the first!!!!!


Fuck you're right. Question 20: "Spell backwards, forwards". This could either be asking to spell "backwards" normally or "forwards" back-to-front. Whatever the test taker does they'll be failed.


“Write every other word in this first line and print every third word in same line, (original type smaller and first line ended at comma) but capitalize the fifth word that you write.” Wanna take stab at this one? I can’t figure it out.


Line a circle around the draw to the farthest letter of this number of line in this sentence


Also /r/asshole design


Might wanna delete that space




This was especially funny because it took me a few seconds to get it.


11. Make it less than one million or make it a million?


It says below 1 million does it not?


It not clear, it say “the number below 1 million”. Can be the number below, or below 1 million.


The reality is they were looking for reasons to fail you and there was no appeal process. There was also no set answers, it was left to the discretion of the grader whether you passed or not. So... A is not a word, it's an indefinite article. Failed. (This is wrong but you can't appeal). You drew a circle and not a line. Failed. The letter V is not the last letter in the alphabet. Failed. When we asked to draw a cross you drew an x and not a lower case t like what they crucified Jesus on. Failed. We told you to cross out the number needed to make this number a million. You crossed out zero which is not a number. Failed. You only crossed out one zero and not four so you made it one billion. Failed. You crossed out more than one zero. Failed. You crossed out the one and gave zero which is a non number. Failed. We told you to draw the last letter in the first word beginning with an L, but we meant in the dictionary and not in the sentence. Failed. You drew a line through B as the first letter of the alphabet, but the first letter in the alphabet is A. Failed. You drew a vertical line and not a horizontal. Failed. You drew a horizontal and not a vertical. Failed. We wanted you to draw three circles all inside each other, not two inside each other and one on its own. Failed. Or we wanted you to draw two circles, one inside the other but you drew three all inside each other. Failed. It was designed vague so no matter what you did they could fail you. That way they could control how many black people voted - just enough so they could say it was above zero but not enough to effect the outcome.


For number 11 I’d cross out the 1. And fail


I like how they add between brackets (engulfed by) as if they're trying to provide a better explanation but it is still utter nonsense and adds nothing to the question




They'd say, "zero isn't a number" so . . . Fail! Zero is a number but what can you do about it?


Absolutely this. You’d have been wrong for a different reason every single time.


Jesus this is harder than the SAT


Well the SAT is hard but it's clearly worded and solvable, and designed to be. This is designed to as unclear as possible.


One wrong answer is a fail…….holy fuck. It’s almost like they didn’t want them to vote…….


They should have given a literacy test to whoever wrote this.


Weird way to spell handcuffs.


What fucking first word beginning with L!?


Why, the word "label" of course. Do you not have the entire English Dictionary memorized? Next time try being whiter.




Or it could be “Louisiana” (first word on the page beginning with “L”)


That's only the case of the one taking the test didn't choose Louisiana. Otherwise it's the only acceptable solution


No voting for you.


I have a master’s degree which involved a ton of writing and I am having trouble parsing a couple of these questions. This seems like it is designed to allow room for ambiguity. That way one can easily argue that the question is false when it was answered correctly as interpreted by the test taker.


That's the idea, yes.


As an autistic person prone to overthinking and confused by ambiguity this gives me the cold shits.


you are not alone.


I'm slightly horrified by the number of people who apparently don't know that these tests were designed to be impossible. It's not written by idiots, and there's no "maybe" about it - these tests were written *very* deliberately, for the sole purpose of blocking Black Americans from voting. I didn't realize that that wasn't common knowledge.


10 mins to complete this BS. Wonder how many people were denied to vote simply based off this! smh


OP only posted the first page. The original is 3 pages long, 30 questions, so 20 seconds per question.


Holy fuck!


thats not even the whole test: [https://slate.com/human-interest/2013/06/voting-rights-and-the-supreme-court-the-impossible-literacy-test-louisiana-used-to-give-black-voters.html](https://slate.com/human-interest/2013/06/voting-rights-and-the-supreme-court-the-impossible-literacy-test-louisiana-used-to-give-black-voters.html) ​ 30 questions


Bullest of shit


One of my history teachers made us take it and I am pretty sure my whole class failed.


Fascinating? Or...racist?


Fascinating how blatantly rasict they were allowed to be


So this was just their way of making it harder for black people to vote right? This doesn't seem like 5th grade literacy questions. I bet most white people in that time couldn't comprehend those questions.


The original “grandfather clause” was that you could vote if your grandfather could vote. You didn’t have to take this test.


>grandfather clause Oh, so THAT'S what getting "grandfathered in" means! TIL. Have a free award thingy.


The very people that carried out these tests were the same people that raised children that would go on to be today's Senators, Congressmen, and election officials in the USA.


My grandmother grew up in Tennessee in the 1930s and 40s. About 15 years ago, during a family dinner, she was fondly reminiscing about how when she was a child she would hang around at voting locations with her dad during elections. His job was to give out these these tests and collect poll taxes from black people. It was a real “holy fuck” moment for everyone else at the table.


In high school I had a really great teacher for AP US History, and when we were learning about the civil rights era he gave the class this test. The twist- he pretended it was a new state exam that we had to pass in order to pass the course. When everyone inevitably complained about how hard and unfair it was, he said, "Now imagine if you had to to do that in order to VOTE." Really helped the message sink in- it's been 10 years and I still haven't forgotten that lesson.


1) Write your name with a pen. 2) Write your name on a glitchy touch pad with a stylus two years later. 3) Write your name with you finger on a android table made by the lowest bidder after waiting in line for 5 hours. 4) The person judging your signature doesn’t know how to pronounce your name or has never known anyone that spells it what way. 5) If any of these signatures don’t match your right to vote will be forfeit. You have one blind try and you will no be informed if your vote is purged.


Is there an answer key?


Yes. White=Pass Black=Fail


I mean yeah, but I’d be curious to see if there even was an answer key. My assumption is no, but I was just curious


Probably not, the whole test was a piece of shit and there is no right answer


There’s not a single way to pass this test, I took it in my history class and my teacher said that they would mark anything that was even slightly wrong. Pretty fun to take and understand tho


I can't solve the first question. DrAw A LiNe ArOuNd ThE nUmBeR oR lEtTeR. What does that even mean?


You see the number next to the question, draw a line around it


But how would you draw a line AROUND something


Would love to see the answer key


There isn’t one. That’s the point. No matter how you answer the questions they are worded in such a way that your answer can be deemed wrong. This test is literally not possible to pass if the proctor does not want to pass you


Why the “line around” and the “Circle” in a different question?


Because if you draw circles around everything the proctor can simply say that line means a box made of straight lines. The point of the phrasing is to make it literally impossible to pass if the proctor does not want to let you pass it


What is the difference between drawing a circle around and drawing a line around? This test was designed to be failed


Is it the first word that begins with “L” in the sentence, line or world?