It is with a heavy heart that the Texas Legislative Black Caucus mourns the passing of one of the most iconic and transformative civil rights activists the world has ever seen, former South African President Nelson Mandela at the age of 95.
Mandela, a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, fought tirelessly to ensure that we as a human race, both aspired to and brought about the reality of equality, in his native of South Africa and on a much larger scale, the world at large. As a man willing to sacrifice for his convictions; his humility, grace, steeled determination and vision never wavered, even as he endured more than 27 years of imprisonment solely for his ideals to make South Africa a truly free and open society for all.
His contributions so vast and comprehensive that they include the peaceful transition from an Apartheid South African government into a functioning, inclusive democratic government, which is the true hallmark of his genius.
Few others in history have ever made the impact on the world that he has. Lincoln, Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, and Mandela all shared the mantle of true statesman & humanitarians in the pantheon of great leaders.
Fortunately enough, members of the Texas Legislative Black Caucus were able to visit South Africa recently to see up close, how Mandela has helped make the country a “Rainbow Nation”.
While we will cherish the memory and legacy that Mandela has left, let us never forget what Mandela taught us, which is that we can never rectify the injustices in our society without great sacrifice, persistence, and a tireless dedication to what is right & just.
Texas Legislative Black Caucus Commends NAACP, Mexican American Legislative Caucus and Civil Rights Groups Actions to Challenge Voter ID Law
(Austin, TX) – The Texas Legislative Black Caucus applauds today’s move by the NAACP State Branches of Texas and the Mexican American Legislative Caucus (MALC) to join the Department of Justice, LULAC, Dallas County, the League of Women Voters, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and a concerned group of affected citizens across Texas in filing suit in the Southern District Court of Texas in Corpus Christi to block the State of Texas’ Voter ID law because of its discriminatory effects in violation of the Voting Rights Act and the 14th and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
The move by the State Branches of the NAACP and MALC to join the assembled collection of high-profile stalwarts for civil rights, signifies that the battle is not over – but rather, the fight to ensure the ability for all in Texas to vote has intensified.
In the suit filed today in the Southern District of Texas’ Federal Court, the Texas NAACP and MALC joined the other plaintiffs including the Department of Justice and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, in arguing the Voter ID law violates Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, because the law makes it harder for hundreds of thousands of minority citizens to vote, thus denying minority voters an equal opportunity to participate in the political process.
The Texas Legislative Black Caucus fought alongside MALC & the NAACP victoriously in the Washington, D.C. Federal Court in 2012, when the Voter ID law was struck down by the D.C. Court (under Section 5 preclearance) due to its discriminatory effect. The Court concluded the Voter ID law would lead to “retrogression in the position of racial minorities with respect to their effective exercise of the electoral franchise.” We look forward to our partners continuing the fight for justice and once again prevailing victoriously to guarantee the rights of all as cemented in the 14th & 15th Amendments as well as the Voting Rights Act.
Texas Legislative Black Caucus Town Hall Meeting
July 24, 2013 from 6:30p to 8:30p
McCoy Auditorium at the Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs on the Texas Southern University Campus
On Wednesday, July 24th from 6:30p to 8:30p, the Texas Legislative Black Caucus will host a Town Hall meeting in the McCoy Auditorium (Room 114) of the Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs of the Texas Southern University Campus located at 3100 Cleburne (Tierwester & Cleburne). The Texas Legislative Black Caucus has partnered with the KEY PAC, Houston Sun, Houston Forward Times, Majic 102 FM, KTSU Radio, KCOH 1230AM Radio and the Texas Southern University – School of Public Affairs.
The Town Hall meeting will provide unprecedented access to African American members of the Texas Legislature from the Houston-area as we cover topics such as the 83rd Session, the recent Supreme Court decision striking down Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act and the impact on Texas, in particular on Voter ID, and the Trayvon Martin verdict.
This meeting will provide a unique opportunity for members of the community to discuss the 83rd Session, as well as how recent Supreme Court actions will have an impact on them. In addition, we want to have a discussion with the community on what lies ahead after the Trayvon Martin verdict. Further, we encourage and will provide an opportunity for members of the community to ask questions to members of the Texas Legislative Black Caucus for a fulfilling, in-depth exchange benefitting all those in attendance with the most current information on the important recent actions which will impact their lives.
We encourage you to attend, it will be well worth your time.
For more information, contact Murry Matthews or Alison Brock at 1.866.885.8900 or 512.463.0554.
WHO: Texas Legislative Black Caucus Members
WHAT: Town Hall meeting to discuss the 83rd Texas Legislature, the recent Supreme Court decision striking down Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act and the impact on Texas in particular on Voter ID, and the Trayvon Martin verdict
WHERE: McCoy Auditorium (Room 114)
Barbara Jordan-Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs
Texas Southern University Campus
3100 Cleburne (Tierwester & Cleburne)
Houston, TX 77004
WHEN: July 24th from 6:30p to 8:30p
WHY: To give unprecedented access to the community and press in order to provide an opportunity to discuss with and ask questions regarding the 83rd Session, as well as the recent Supreme Court decision striking down Section 4(b) of the Voting Rights Act, and the Trayvon Martin case
The Texas Legislative Black Caucus truly appreciates all of the great people in attendance at the 2013 African American Legislative Summit. As native Texans and new friends from South Africa gathered for an amazing time, over 3,000 attendees were present during the 2013 African American Legislative Summit. From highly acclaimed international guests, rising young leaders from across the United States, and world-class comedians and performers; the Summit was a sight no one wanted to miss! Most importantly, none of this was possible without all of the wonderful people in attendance and for that the Texas Legislative Black Caucus thanks you dearly! Thanks again for all your kind support and we look forward to seeing you all again in 2015!!
Check out some of the pictures below from the 2013 African American Legislative Summit!Read more ...