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Show your support for the NAACP

Published: Sat, October 3, 2009 @ 12:00 a.m.

By Ernie Brown

The fall season is usually the time when the area’s minority-rights advocacy groups have their major fundraisers.

This month there will be events sponsored by the Youngstown Chapter and Mercer County Unit of the NAACP.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has been a strong advocate for protecting the rights of black Americans and other oppressed people for a century.

The organization began in February 1909 and had its origins not in the segregated South, but rather in Springfield, Ill., which had a horrendous reputation for lynching black men.

According to its Web site, the organization actually was the brainchild of white liberals who were the descendants of abolitionists. A call went out for a public meeting on racial justice. About 60 people attended, seven of whom were black. Some of the black people who answered the call were among the most famous and respected in black history — W.E.B. DuBois, a noted black scholar, historian and writer, who would go on to create the organization’s periodical Crisis magazine; Ida B. Wells-Barnett, a black journalist and lecturer who was vehemently opposed to lynching; and Mary Church Terrell, lecturer and advocate of suffrage and civil rights.

The first president was Joel Spingarn, one of the NAACP founders, a Jewish-American professor of literature who formulated much of the strategy that led to the organization’s growth.

The NAACP’s goal then — and now — is to “ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of minority-group citizens of the United States and eliminate race prejudice. The NAACP seeks to remove all barriers of racial discrimination through the democratic processes,” according to its Web site.

Through the years, the organization was at the forefront of some of the most significant achievements in American history. It was involved in the legal process to eliminate lynching in this country. Its leaders brought in an attorney named Thurgood Marshall to argue and prevail in the U.S. Supreme Court in the historic Brown v. Board of Education case that overturned the country’s separate-but-equal doctrine and paved the way for integration.

Under the leadership of Walter F. White, the NAACP was a factor in winning rights for blacks in labor unions. The organization spoke out loudly that the nation’s military should no longer be segregated.

Under the long tenure of executive secretary Roy Wilkins, the organization was instrumental in bringing about the historic March on Washington in 1963 and was out in front during the Civil Rights Movements of the 1950s and 1960s and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

The Youngstown chapter has been a presence in the Mahoning Valley since 1919, and the Mercer unit began in 1963. The local groups have fought against discrimination in housing, the work force and in public venues.

The 21st century still needs minority-rights groups to help ensure a level playing field in health care, economics and other areas for all people of color.

The Youngstown chapter’s 90th annual Freedom Fund Banquet will be at 7 p.m. Friday at Mahoning Country Club, 710 E. Liberty St., Girard.

Tickets are $30 each. The theme for the evening is “100 Years of Bold Dreams and Big Victories.”

The guest speaker will be political activist Atty. Meredith Lilly, who served as regional field representative for the 2008 Obama for America Campaign.

The Mercer unit’s 46th annual banquet will be at 6:30 p.m. Friday at the Radisson Hotel in West Middlesex. The guest speaker will be Dr. Theodore L. Yarboro, a black family physician from Sharon and a past chairman of the unit’s membership committee.

I’m sure the organizations would love to see a great turnout, and it would be especially gratifying if younger people would choose to get involved to maintain the NAACP’s continued area presence.



1saddad(646 comments)posted 5 years, 11 months ago

Pro Am-- Drop dead --Please!

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2mikeymike(469 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

What happened to freedom of speech,if the roles were reversed African Americans would be allowed to voice their opinions,on articles involving white hate groups.

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3pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

I do undersand some of the comments made. NAACP. What about my cultures past...Irish...Stoned as we got off the boat to the Americas...Proceed in line off the boat, sign your name to elect somebody you dont know nor will ever see, and fight in the Civil war! Going back a little further...My damn ancestors had to grow potatoes to live on...for various reasons(climate and geography)...But we needed plants that grew underground so when they came to rape our villages and plunder our women, they couldnt steal ALL the food.

Polish...what hasnt Poland gone through...Napolianic wars...Cummunist Soviet invaders...Gemany invaders...on and on and on.

Wheres my WET tv...White entertainment Tele!
Wheres my NAACP
Wheres my ACLU...And what in the heck have they done for me.
I dont mind anybodies supporty groups...they have value...Just please...live in todays world ...Our president is black...err...Iraqian...err...mixed...err...and was voted in by the white population. They picked change(but they didnt get it...they got a polation) and race was not the issue.
Wheres Caucasion history month
Wheres my Ivory Mag.
PS...half my friends are black...and they dont know where my WET tv is either

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4pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

and what were you guys typing that they pulled your comments off?

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5mikeymike(469 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

My original comment was pulled off by the staff,because I TOLD THE TRUTH ! The truth hurts some people.

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6borylie(894 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

In my opinion these are some valid and unfortunately courageous posts. One thing I've been trumpeting is that White Americans can no longer be afraid to speak up for our rights. I'm not sure,but besides being unable to go into black areas,I think White Americans were afraid the blacks were going to riot and now it's being called racists,that have kept White Americans from being able to point out the real black problems. I don't like anything being stuffed down my throat,and I'd surely accept blacks a lot easier if it wasn't be demanded of me and my fellow White Americans. Be civil fellow White Americans,but no longer should we be silenced.

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7pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

What bothers me the most about it...I have gone out of my way to treat all peole equal...but most importantly...teach my children that. But years of being pounded with 'its not fair' and 'we were abused'...I wasnt there...I didnt do it...Just as you werent there with my Irish background...Do I hold you accountable? No. Our racism is being taught in the homes...by thier own ignorant parents. Stupidity, lazy, racism, ageism, and all the other poss. ismsthat are out there...color is not the issue...racism is color blind...And it seems as if it grows in one direction and diminishes in another...So who is that should feel descriminated against...Cause I dont see any advocates in my court.

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8pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

In a way, Im kind of glad I dont have a support group. It forces you to succeed. Sink or swim. Sometimes I think the NAACP and others actually hold a culture back. It gives the youth this feel of racism, seperation, alienation, from other cultures. Instead of putting your best foot forward in the face of adversity...One will tend to lean on that crutch...Offer an excuse for failures instead of learning and moving forward. I dont blame the kids...I blame the racist parent? Are you one of them? Hope not.

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9artful96(17 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

WOW, Inspite of what I just read here; I still have faith, hope and charity for the Valley. Wow.

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10Stan(9923 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Ever hear the term "too white" ? Scholastic achievers are not looked upon favorably . Those who prosper and work are targeted by their own . Lots of problems exist . Far too many times the shortcomings are blamed on the whites and the system . In life you are what you make of yourself . Neither success nor self destruction has color barriers .

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11redvert(2173 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Here is a copy of a speech written by Bill Cosby and a recording of a shorter version presented at a meeting of the NAACP on the 50th anniversary of Brown vs. Brown. This is from a successful black man. Note the look Mr. Cosby is getting from Jesse Jackson. If you cannot agree with Bill's words then you are part of the problem.


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12pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Got to to love Bill Cosby.

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13cambridge(3396 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

ProMerkin...."Who needs neither one?"

You claim you were a teacher? Where did you teach, at slip and fall school?

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14redvert(2173 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

cambridge, with all the different things being discussed in this topic you come storming in with a spelling error. Not much of a attack but we understand that your options were limited?

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15Alexinytown(246 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

This issue is supercharged clearly. Unfortunately, to even make observations that are contrary to what the NAACP would like to hear will be construed as racist, rather than treated like an objective observation. I still maintain that what is happening in inner city America is purely a culturaland not racist, and I know the NAACP does not want to hear that, but that is objectively what I am seeing.

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16I_loveGod1(3 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

NAACP....great event and great speaker!

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17pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

I agree I_loveGod1...keep the ethnic population down...that was sarcasm by the way...click on the link above...THAT was a good event

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18pit_bull_marley(291 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

Bill Cosby rules!

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19UnionForever(1470 comments)posted 5 years, 10 months ago

NAACP is a racist organization against whites. It once was developed by whites and blacks to help blacks overcome, but now they use it to acuse white people of racist acts like Al & Jesse do all the time when in reality no racism is involved. The Vindy will pull my and others comments because they don't want to offend? Let's face reality - this is truth we speak about the NAACP..

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