US black rights group em­barks on Alabam­ato-Washington march

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

Ac­tivists from the NAACP, Amer­ica’s old­est and largest civil rights group, em­barked this week­end on a month-and-a-half long march from Selma, Alabama to Washington, D.C., to fo­cus na­tional at­ten­tion on is­sues of racial in­jus­tice.

The 1,384- kilo­me­ter ( 860 miles) jour­ney, “Amer­ica’s Jour­ney for Jus­tice,” got un­der way Satur­day in Selma, seen by many as the birthplace of the U.S. civil rights move­ment more a half­cen­tury ago.

Stops by the pre­dom­i­nantly African-Amer­i­can civil rights group are planned in Mont­gomery, Alabama; At­lanta, Ge­or­gia; and other cities in the U.S. South be­fore the marchers ar­rive in Washington, D.C. in early Septem­ber.

The Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion for the Ad­vance­ment of Col­ored Peo­ple said in a state­ment that among the is­sues it hopes to call at­ten­tion to are crim­i­nal jus­tice re­form and de­mands for im­proved ed­u­ca­tional eq­uity in schools across the na­tion.

“For 40 days and 40 nights, the NAACP will mo­bi­lize ac­tivists and ad­vance a fo­cused na­tional ad­vo­cacy agenda that pro­tects the right of ev­ery Amer­i­can to a fair crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem, un­cor­rupted and un­fet­tered ac­cess to the bal­lot box, sus­tain­able jobs with a liv­ing wage, and eq­ui­table public ed­u­ca­tion,” the group said in a state­ment.

“Amer­ica’s Jour­ney for Jus­tice will unite part­ners from the so­cial jus­tice, youth ac­tivism, civil rights, democ­racy re­form, re­li­gious, not­for-profit, la­bor, cor­po­rate, and en­vi­ron­men­tal com­mu­ni­ties to call for jus­tice for all Amer­i­cans un­der the uni­fy­ing theme ‘Our Lives, Our Votes, Our Jobs, Our Schools Mat­ter.’”

The NAACP also launched a so­cial media cam­paign linked to the event, un­der the hash­tag #Jus­ticeSum­mer.

The walk comes at a time of height­ened racial ten­sions in the United States, in large part be­cause of a rash of re­cent cases in which black cit­i­zens have died dur­ing po­lice ar­rests, prompt­ing al­le­ga­tions of dis­crim­i­na­tion and ex­ces­sive use of force.

AP

Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion for the Ad­vance­ment of Col­ored Peo­ple (NAACP) head Cor­nell Wil­liam Brooks holds the hand of Rachel Quar­ter­man, 7, while lead­ing the “Amer­ica’s Jour­ney for Jus­tice March” in Selma, Alabama on Satur­day, Aug. 1.

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