Font made out of gerrymandered congressional districts shows how effed up our system is

Gerrymandering is a funny word, isn't it? Did you know that it's actually a mashup of the name "Gerry" and the word "salamander"? Apparently, in 1812, Massachusetts governor Elbridge Gerry had a new voting district drawn that seemed to favor his party. On a map, the district looked like a salamander, and a Boston paper published it with the title The GerryMander.

That tidbit of absurdity seems rather tame compared to an entire alphabet made from redrawn voting districts a century later, and yet here we are. God bless America.


RELATED: She railed against gerrymandering in an epic tweetstorm. We should all listen.

The Gerry font is a real, usable font "created by your congressional districts." It was actually created by a couple of guys in Chicago, but they seem to prefer remaining anonymous and letting the letters speak for themselves. Most of the letters are singular voting districts, while some are pieced together from a couple of different districts. But the fact that any voting district could look like any readable letter of the alphabet is a bit, well, absurd.

You can download the font for free at UglyGerry.com. The website specifies the districts used to make each letter and encourages people to use the font "to tell congress how happy you are that your vote doesn't matter."

Your letter to congress might end up looking a bit like a ransom note, but that's kind of the point. Our votes are being held hostage by politicians trying to gain the upper hand by squiggling with Sharpies on our maps. The geographical gymnastics they engage in to do so would be impressive if it wasn't so ridiculous.

RELATED: Why is this 5K race route so confusing? Because it was drawn by politicians.

As Representative Mark Takano of California pointed out, "Gerrymandering in America is so bad, they made an entire font out of it. This font is hard to decipher and makes no sense—just like most congressional districts."

Seriously, what kind of psychopath draws a voting district that looks like an "N" or an "C" or a "K"?

To give you an idea of what gerrymandering looks like on a real map, see this map of Ohio:

Jim Jordan's district looks like a letter "J"—and that's not even the district the Ugly Gerry folks used in their font.

If you think this is dumb and something that shouldn't be allowed, you're not alone. Unfortunately, you're also not on the Supreme Court, whose majority seems to have tossed up their hands and said, "Nothing we can do!"

So it looks like writing our representatives some sternly worded letters in the creepy Gerry font may be our only recourse if we hope to end this silly practice on both sides of the aisle.

popular


Hollywood is finally moving closer to equality. The past few years have seen a growing number of films starring, written by and directed by women. There's still a lot of progress yet to be made, of course. But there's one area where women have been kicking butt and taking names for decades: action films. Ironically, action films are stereotyped as the launching pad of the manliest of manly men: Schwarzenegger, The Rock, Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone and so on. But some of the biggest action hits, both critically and commercially, are led by women.

If you're looking to expand your home video library for the holidays or just searching for a great holiday playlist while taking out some healthy aggression, here are 12 of our all-time favorite films featuring strong women front and center.

Keep Reading Show less
Culture

One in five pregnancies end in miscarriage. It's a sad and heartbreaking experience, but there still is a lot to learn from going through something so tragic. Beyoncé recently shared what she learned from her miscarriages in an "ask me anything" published in the January 2020 issue of Elle Magazine.

A fan asked Beyoncé if she was disappointed she didn't win awards for Lemonade and Homecoming. Beyoncé said her miscarriages helped put it in perspective. "I began to search for deeper meaning when life began to teach me lessons I didn't know I needed. Success looks different to me now. I learned that all pain and loss is in fact a gift," she said in Elle Magazine.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

Even though 68% of women in America where size 14 or above, plus sized women tend to draw more heat for the outfits that they wear, especially if those outfits are even remotely racy. Earlier this week, Lizzo was spotted at a LA Lakers game wearing the dress heard round the internet. Dubbed the "thong dress," Lizzo's t-shirt dress was straightforward in the front, but the back featured cutouts featuring her thong and fishnet stockings.

During the game, Lizzo twerked when the Laker Girls danced to her song "Juice," giving the crowd a full view of her ensemble.

Keep Reading Show less
popular

The Miss America pageant was started in 1921, but women of color were barred from participating until 1940. It took another 30 years for the first black woman to participate in the pageant in 1970. In 1983, Vanessa Williams became the first black woman to win Miss America. Now, the winners of all four major beauty pageants are all black women.

Zozibini Tunzi of South Africa was crowned Miss Universe, making this the first time in history that Miss America, Miss USA, Miss Teen USA, and Miss Universe are all black women. Tunzi is the first black woman to win Miss Universe since 2011, when Leila Lopes took home the crown.


Keep Reading Show less