RELEASE: 50 Years After Freedom Summer, Report Shows that Communities of Color Can Shift the Balance of Power in ‘Black Belt’ States
Washington, D.C. — Fifty years after Freedom Summer sparked a pivotal moment in the civil rights movement, a new report released today by the Center for American Progress, in conjunction with an event exploring the subject, examines how current demographic and political changes in heavily black southern states could upset the balance of power in many of the country’s so-called “Black Belt” states. The report analyzes 13 Black Belt states that are still defined by racial polarization: Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia. In these Black Belt states—which each contain a black population of at least 10 percent—voters of color continue to be locked out of statewide politics, and candidates of color rarely get elected to statewide office. However, as outlined in the report, a massive wave of voter registration could trigger a major shift in the country’s political landscape that would shake up the status quo and create a more inclusive Black Belt.
Educate, Organize and Mobilize: I’ve been doing commentaries on our Campaign to Defeat Voter Suppression since November, 2013. Because the right to vote is fundamental to our democracy, I’ve tried to promote a non-partisan theory of voter enfranchisement. The right to vote is essential to the existence of the United States as a free and open society and shouldn’t be viewed in a partisan prism. The right to vote should be an issue of citizenship, not partisanship. Unfortunately, voter suppression appears to be a partisan pursuit. To provide a balanced presentation of world-wide voter suppression, since about September 2013, I’ve been subscribing to Google Alerts,” voter suppression”, a free service. Several times each week, I receive alerts from Google to stories that address voter suppression. Google Alerts aren’t compiled with partisan considerations but selected because they relate to the right to vote. Some of my commentaries are included in Google Alerts.
Greater Diversity News (GDN) is a statewide publication with national reach and relevance. We are a chosen news source for underrepresented and underserved communities in North Carolina. GDN and our companion website focuses on issues and opportunities important to Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUBs) and issues of community interest and empowerment such as Moral Monday and voter suppression.
GDN covers news that is vital to unrepresented and underserved communities we need your financial support to help us remain viable.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) today notified 96 Alabama school systems that their enrollment practices violate federal prohibitions against denying or discouraging the enrollment of children based on their immigration status or that of their parents. In many cases, school enrollment forms require a Social Security number or a U.S. birth certificate, without explaining that such disclosure, under federal law, is voluntary and not necessary for enrollment. The SPLC also urged Alabama School Superintendent Thomas R. Bice to ensure that all schools within the state’s 135 districts comply with federal mandates by the beginning of the 2014-15 school year.