Cure the Racism infecting NC’s Voting Maps Drawn in 2011 by Extremists, Who Used Them to Perpetuate Their Illegal Seatsby NC NAACP November 7, 2017
NC NAACP President Rev. Dr. T. Anthony Spearman Speaks Out
RALEIGH– On November 1, U.S. District Court Judges Margaret Eagles, Thomas Shroeder and 4th Circuit Judge James Wynn filed a detailed order which answered many of the questions our 20,000 NAACP members and tens of thousands more friends who believe in voting equality have been asking. The three judges, experts on the tricks the legislature used to suppress and segregate voters after six years of heated legal struggle, appointed a Special Master with a budget to hire a staff to draw new maps to meet the requirements of the equal protection clause of the U.S. Constitution. Here are the answers to the frequently asked questions we get:
The court “anticipates” a hearing on the Special Master’s Final Report in early January, 2018, noting candidates must file for primaries between February 12-18, 2018.
The court ordered the Special Master’s final report to contain
(a) At least one recommended redistricting plan for each Subject District;
(b) For each county or county grouping encompassing a Subject District, a color map showing the recommended remedial plan;
(c) an explanation of the proposed remedial plan for each Subject District;
(d) a comparison of the proposed districts with the present districts on these factors: population deviations; compactness; county, municipal, and precinct splits; incumbency pairing; Black Voting Age Population; and any other relevant criteria;
(e) a “stat pack” for the recommended plans.
For 109 years the NAACP has had one purpose: to eliminate racial discrimination in our society including in our voting system. The NC NAACP filed the first complaint, and helped out legal team put together the detailed evidence which the U.S. Supreme Court reviewed last winter, before ruling, 9-0, the maps that dictated who could vote where for three voting cycles, were unconstitutional. Finally, with the appointment and job description of the Special Master, we begin to see Justice on the horizon.
We thank our lawyers, the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, our amicus legal team, Forward Justice which argued for a Special Master, and our hundreds of thousands of Moral Fusion friends for their work and patience. We are all “sick and tired” of being forced to vote in apartheid districts.
We want to get on with the work of repairing the breaches in God’s Human Family by working together to solve social problems. When the white extremist caucus locks its big golden doors on every legislator of color, it locks its doors on the Grace of God, and of all God’s children. Segregating our voting districts leads to a segregated party on one side, and a diverse, moral fusion electorate on the other side.
The 3-judge court has taught us how to allow each side the opportunity to make their arguments, with faith that the outcome will benefit from the light, if not the heat, of the dialectic. We trust some members of the white caucus feel some shame for their efforts to re-segregate North Carolina. We trust there will be new efforts by the white ideologues to look at where their race-based politics has taken the state.