Educate, organize and mobilize: Over the past months I’ve written about the necessity of Black voters requiring patronage in return for electing politicians to office, political accountability and the Voter Empowerment Summit. This week I’ll highlight ongoing discussions and I’ll address what I consider the most positive political development that I’ve witnessed in North Carolina since the selection of Sen. Dan Blue as North Carolina’s first Black Speaker of the NC House of Representatives.
It’ll take several articles to properly outline the foundation of the Black community’s way forward and I’ll approach this topic by discussing recent doings of the NC Alliance of Black Elected Officials, and by discussing the Third Reconstruction vs., the New Confederacy.
This week I’ll address the New Confederacy and how their efforts at voter suppression have created and concentrated enormous, transformative political power in Black elected officials. For purposes of understanding I’ll define the New Confederacy as a targeted opposition force aggressively promoting voter suppression. However, the reality is that the New Confederacy is a strategic geographical force that is working in cooperation with other conservative led legislatures around the country. The New Confederacy is simply the latest iteration of the southern states that seceded from the United States of America over 150 years ago thereby provoking the Civil War. Their objectives today are no less sinister and despicable than they were 150 years ago against recently freed slaves. And their chief tool is the same, voter suppression.
The states I include in the New Confederacy are South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina in order of succession. Today these states have legislatures that are controlled by conservative Republicans and they are represented by conservatives in the US Senate and House of Representatives. They are the conservative core in charge of and control the US Senate and House of Representatives.
The First Reconstruction took place immediately after the Civil War, starting in or around 1867, and was designed to ensure voting rights and economic opportunities to recently freed slaves. The backlash of the “old” Confederacy ended the First Reconstruction after less than ten years and initiated “Jim Crow,” legal segregation, which lasted up to approximately 1954. By doing this the old Confederacy relegated Blacks citizens to a near slavery existence and took away their meaningful right to vote. The Second Reconstruction is also known as the Civil Rights Era and is loosely defined as the time after the 1954 Brown vs. Board of Education Supreme Court Decision up to the Supreme Court Decision of 2013 overturning important strategic provisions of the 1965 Voter Rights Act. Again, the attack on Black political power and voting rights ended another era of Black progress. However, as discussed herein, Blacks are much better prepared to address the more recent attacks on our voting rights.
Recently I’ve discussed a current leadership training & development project that is being conducted by the NC Alliance of Black Elected Officials. Based upon the brief discussions that I’ve been involved in, one component of that training is designed to enable Black elected officials to evaluate various Affirmative Action plans of public bodies in order to ensure that Black businesses and job seekers are afforded equal opportunity to take advantage of their employment and contracting activities. In my opinion, this is the kind of political accountability that should stir Black voters to more aggressive participation. This is not the response that the New Confederacy wants to see.
As reported earlier, the Voter Empowerment Summit being convened by NC House Democratic Leader, Larry Hall and the NC Alliance of Black Elected Officials Chairman, Richard Hooker had to be postponed because of insurmountable conflicts. On this Saturday, January 10, I’ll do a presentation at the Eastern North Carolina Civic Group meeting in Edgecombe County. In addition to addressing much of what I’ve written about for more than a year, we will choose a new date for the Summit.
Lastly, as more details of the summit are formalized and more information on the efforts of the Alliance is made available we will provide updates. The summit is free and open to all. If your organization is interested in being a co-sponsor of the Summit, please send me an email stating the same.
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Peter Grear, Esq. writes for Greater Diversity News with a primary focus on politics and economics. To support our efforts to marry our politics and economics please “Like” and follow us at http://www.facebook.com/VoteYourEconomics. “Share” our articles, and your ideas and comments on Facebook or at our website www.GreaterDiversity.com. Comments can also be sent to [email protected] Finally, please ask all of your Facebook “Friends” to follow our above-referenced recommendations. •