Today is the 50th anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964! The Civil Rights Act outlawed discrimination based on race, religion, color, sex, or national origin. It attempted to end unequal voter registration requirements and racial segregation in schools, the workplace, and public accommodations. Over the last two years, we have seen some reversal of the Civil Rights laws with unfavorable Supreme Court decisions. Congress is paralyzed and unable to respond to changes ordered by the Supreme Court, which results in a rolling back of some of the protections earned in the Civil Rights Law. We have seen a gutting of the Voting Rights Act so that most of the Southern States do not have to ask for permission to change their voting procedures before implementing obstacles to voting. We saw a limiting of Affirmative Action in public universities and colleges. We have seen a limiting of minority and gender equality issues in the workplace.
We wish to commemorate the legislation’s passing by reminding everyone that the rights we take for granted were hard earned. We remember that a Congressman from Southern Ohio, William McCulloch, crossed party lines and courageously voted for the Civil Rights act or it would have failed. We celebrate the Civil Rights protections in the United States everyday and we work to protect the voting rights of the largely minority homeless population in Ohio. We have a page on some of the Civil Rights work we are currently working to forward. While much ground has been gained by laws such as the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act, there is still work to be done and progress to be made. Voting discrimination continues to be a problem and nondiscrimination on all grounds is incomplete. So preserve the legacy of the act passed fifty years ago by seeing what you can do today for civil rights.
by Brian Davis
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