Sunday, June 9, 2013

Voting Rights Program

Just Peace
Mondays, 6pm - 7pm EST ----- WRFG-Atlanta 89.3 FM
Voting Rights Act and Section 5
About Shelby County, Alabama challenging the nation's most  
important civil rights legislation in history 
 Faya Rose Toure and Hank Sanders of the National Voting Rights Museum and Institute in Selma, Alabama; Laughlin McDonald of the ACLU's National Voting Rights Office;
David Gespass of the National Lawyers Guild
ACLU'S Laughlin McDonald along with Ryan Haygood of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund;
activist Shirley Sherrod; and journalist Greg Palast.  

WRFG-Atlanta (89.3FM)
Monday, June 3 from 6-8PM EST 

One of the major challenges we've faced in the United States regarding racist and discriminatory government and individual behavior has been the lack of federal resolve. Some examples are that when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated and Andrew Johnson became president Johnson essentially forgave the southern secessionists and gave then back their land and other rights; in 1877 the federal government removed it's troops from the South which ended the reconstruction period and opened up the wholesale economic and civil rights exploitation of the Black community in the South with the creation and implementation of the draconian Jim Crow laws.
Finally in the 1960's with the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and especially the 1965 Voting Rights Act we witnessed the end of Jim Crow.

Regarding the federal government and it's resolve to address discriminatory behavior with the implementation of laws and regulations, Section 5 of the 1965 Voting Rights has to be one of the most important civil rights provisions ever passed by Congress. Without doubt, It is in Section 5 that we finally witness "resolve" on the part of the federal government to ensure the democratic rights of all its citizens along with the understanding that many areas of the country, particularly the former slave states, continue to orchestrate ways to deny citizens their rights. Given all the testimony in Congress for years about the on-going voting violations by states and counties, Section 5 remains the stalwart Congressional provision that protects voters.

To learn about Section 5, it's history and challenges before the Supreme Court, read the attachedOVERVIEW AND HISTORY OF THE VOTING RIGHTS ACT OF 1965 AND SECTION 5 by the national voting rights expert, Laughlin McDonald, head of the ACLU's National Voting Rights Office.

  Voting Rights Program Line-up (6-8PM EST)
line up  
A History of voting rights struggles in the South  
Faya Rose Toure (attorney, advocate and one of the founders of the  
The creation of the Voting Rights Act in 1965,  
the importance of Section 5 and   
struggles/challenges overtime to its constitutionality
Hearing from Alabama attorneys on the  
Shelby County, Alabama challenge
Hank Sanders (attorney, Alabama Senator in Selma and one of the 

Recent voting rights cases indicating the importance  
of and need for Section 5 
Ryan Haygood (attorney with the NAACP Legal Defense Fund)

Recent voting rights issue in Georgia demonstrating  
the importance of Section 5
Shirley Sherrod (renowned activist and organizer for justice)

Observations around the country on voting rights
abuses demonstrating the need for protections
Greg Palast (BBC producer and journalist. Investigative reporter who 
discovered the voting abuses in Florida in  the 2000 elections and wrote 
in response the book The Best Democracy Money Can Buy)
It's thanks to the support of our listeners like you that we continue providing the community with progressive news and information. Donations can be made on line at or by calling the studio at 404 523 8989.

Thanks everyone,

Heather Gray & Nadia Ali, Ph.D.
Co-producers, Just Peace
WRFG 89.3 FM
404 523 8989 (studio)

Tune in and join the conversation!  You can also listen on the web by going to our home page ( and clicking on the "Listen Live" icon on the righthand side of the page. 

General Programming Policy in WRFG's by-lawsWRFG is a community-oriented, educational, alternative medium and our programming must reflect this. We are for those alternatives that uplift human dignity and give people more control over their lives. WRFG is opposed to those forces in our lives that dehumanize and oppress people, especially economic exploitation, racism, sexism, militarism and anti-foreign/anti-immigrant chauvinism.

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