ClarksdaleNews believes we have come a very long way, and that our progress is positive. There is still a way to go. Education about out past is also particularly important. It shows how far we’ve come, it shows that more is possible, gives light on the path to it, and helps unify all of us in our combined efforts for even more racial equality progress moving forward.
The Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) is excited to release Segregation in America, a new report and companion website documenting how millions of white Americans joined a mass movement of committed, unwavering, and often violent opposition to the Civil Rights Movement. EJI believes that understanding this mass opposition to racial equality, integration, and civil rights is central to confronting the continuing challenges of racial inequality today. (The Segregation Report here)
EJI invites you to join them in exploring this ground-breaking research and the critical, often overlooked truths it exposes.
The story of the American Civil Rights Movement is familiar: courageous activists waged an epic struggle, faced great risks, and suffered tragic losses to achieve victories that forever changed the nation.
Segregation in America tells the lesser-known story of national opposition to civil rights and racial equality. White Americans concentrated in the South and influential throughout the country conducted a widespread, organized, and determined campaign to defend segregation and white supremacy. Opposition to civil rights was led by elected officials, journalists, and community leaders who espoused virulently racist ideologies, shut down public schools and parks to prevent integration, and encouraged violence against civil rights activists.
Segregation in America profiles dozens of segregationist leaders, who were not shamed or banished after the passage of civil rights and voting rights laws in the 1960s, but instead repeatedly won re-election to the highest political offices. Our failure to repudiate segregationists and their ideologies has allowed racial bias to remain unchallenged in many modern institutions.
EJI has also identified more than 1500 Confederate monuments across the United States, including dozens outside the South. The report website includes an interactive map with details and images highlighting that scores of Confederate monuments were installed in the 1950s and 60s as part of the mass opposition to civil rights and racial equality.
“America’s history of racial inequality continues to haunt us. Many of the issues we face today are shadowed by an underlying narrative of racial difference and bias that compromises our progress. Our nation, now more than ever, is in desperate need of truth and recovery. That process is sequential: we must first tell the truth about our past before we can overcome it.”
For nearly 30 years, EJI has been advocating for fair treatment in the criminal justice system, challenging racial injustice and poverty, and creating hope for marginalized communities. EJI recently opened the critically acclaimed National Memorial for Peace and Justice and the Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration in Montgomery, Alabama.
We are a private, nonprofit organization and our work relies on your support. Thank you for standing with us. Please visit eji.org to join our community, learn more about our latest projects, and support our efforts.
EJI is on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
About Bryan Stevenson
BRYAN STEVENSON is the founder and Executive Director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama. Mr. Stevenson is a widely acclaimed public interest lawyer who has dedicated his career to helping the poor, the incarcerated and the condemned. Under his leadership, EJI has won major legal challenges eliminating excessive and unfair sentencing, exonerating innocent death row prisoners, confronting abuse of the incarcerated and the mentally ill and aiding children prosecuted as adults. Mr. Stevenson has successfully argued several cases in the United States Supreme Court and recently won an historic ruling that mandatory life-without-parole sentences for all children 17 or younger are unconstitutional. Mr. Stevenson and his staff have won reversals, relief or release for over 125 wrongly condemned prisoners on death row. Mr. Stevenson has initiated major new anti-poverty and anti-discrimination efforts that challenge the legacy of racial inequality in America, including major projects to educate communities about slavery, lynching and racial segregation. Mr. Stevenson is also a Professor of Law at the New York University School of Law.