In 2028, America’s leaders introduced a series of laws that rescinded voting rights of many Black and poor people. When the National Workfare Act was signed into law a year later, millions of these citizens became wards of the federal government, forced to work far from home in inhumane conditions. And they didn't work for pay — they worked only to survive…

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Michael Dobson and Devin Thomas lost their friend and brother, Trevor Minty, when they were attacked for walking through the wrong neighborhood one night during their senior year of high school. No one was convicted. After that tragic event, the boys dedicated their lives to promoting social justice, racial equity and uplifting their community. They later teamed up with Michael’s fiancé, Odessa Bradford, to start a small nonprofit organization whose mission was to connect clients to life-improvement resources and services. And after the rash of highly-publicized murders of innocent young Black people, they organized meetings and support groups that helped the community heal.

In Back to Dixie, the group held voter registration drives and campaigned vigorously for Jim Weldon, the Democratic candidate for president in 2020, who promised to address systemic racism as a top priority once elected. His bitterly contested election victory was widely attributed to the Black vote. And true to his word, President Weldon signed the SCALE Act into law in 2023. It became the most positively impactful law for Black people since the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Unfortunately, the law’s success didn’t please many in the country.

Strong America, an organization of powerful businessmen and politicians, opposed the law and vowed to get it repealed. After reshaping Congress, they not only repealed SCALE, but got laws passed that removed voting rights from many of the country’s Black and poor citizens, including Michael, Odessa, and Devin. Their plan culminated when Willie Earl, their hand-picked charismatic southern conservative, won the 2028 presidential election and signed the National Workfare Act into law shortly afterwards.

Under Workfare rules, Michael’s mother, Sheila, along with millions of other Black and poor citizens immediately became wards of the federal government, forced to live away from their homes and work long and hard for nothing. Michael and his friends join REACH, a national organization formed to monitor and oppose Strong America, and risk everything to free his Sheila and as many others as they could.

Back to Dixie follows the lives of some ordinary and a few not so ordinary people through ten tumultuous years when the political pendulum dramatically swings far left to far right, taking readers on an emotional journey through an alternate reality that is both riveting and terrifying.

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How systemic racism is addressed in the book


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MEET THE AUTHOR

LEN HYDE

From corporate meeting rooms to writing alone in a room, life’s road is never straight or direct. Instead, it has a way of taking us through experiences and events that shape our thoughts and perspectives, allowing us to evolve as the universe intended. I am thankful for all of life’s lessons, as I pull from them in my writings each day.

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