The National Black Chamber of Commerce filed an amicus brief in support of the plaintiffs. Section 5 needs to be removed as it is antiquated and drags down the importance of the Voting Rights Act. As President Bill Clinton would say about the Civil Rights Act, “mend it, don’t end it.” All of the traditional civil rights organizations supported President Clinton when he said this. But, oh Lord, when we filed our brief all hell broke loose. Friends and foes all had something to say about our position. We are proud of our position, because it was the correct thing to do, and the Supreme Court agreed. Nothing bad is going to happen. Sometimes you need to update things to make them current and more effective.
Imagine, continuing to police Memphis, Jackson, Miss.; Birmingham; Atlanta; New Orleans, etc. It is stupid! The Black vote in these areas is so strong that if something bad happens either a Black did it or let it happen. Back in 2009, the Supreme Court warned Congress to update the Voting Rights Act and Congress ignored it. So this week, the Supreme Court made the needed changes itself. They admonished Congress by suggesting maybe now they will further update the act.
The moans and screams of some of our elected officials and community leaders are unfounded. Look at Jackson, Miss. This city is now 80 percent Black and recently held a mayoral election. All three candidates were Black. The winner was Chokwe Lumumba, a career Black radical and activist. This is just one example of the success of the Voting Rights Act. Don’t listen to the lame hype. The Constitution and the Voting Rights Act are stronger than ever.
Alford is the co-founder, president/CEO of the National Black Chamber of Commerce®. Website: www.nationalbcc.org. email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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