02
Jul
14

50th Anniversary of The Civil Rights Act

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50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

Few achievements have defined our national identity as distinctly or as powerfully as the passage of the Civil Rights Act. It transformed our understanding of justice, equality, and democracy and advanced our long journey toward a more perfect Union. It helped bring an end to the Jim Crow era, banning discrimination in public places; prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; and providing a long-awaited enforcement mechanism for the integration of schools. A half-century later, we celebrate this landmark achievement and renew our commitment to building a freer, fairer, greater society.

Through the lens of history, the progress of the past five decades may seem inevitable. We may wish to remember our triumphs while erasing the pain and doubt that came before. Yet to do so would be a disservice to the giants who led us to the mountaintop, to unsung heroes who left footprints on our National Mall, to every American who bled and died on the battlefield of justice. In the face of bigotry, fear, and unyielding opposition from entrenched interests, their courage stirred our Nation’s conscience. And their struggle helped convince a Texas Democrat who had previously voted against civil rights legislation to become its new champion. With skillful charm and ceaseless grit, President Lyndon B. Johnson shepherded the Civil Rights Act through the Congress — and on July 2, 1964, he signed it into law.

While laws alone cannot right every wrong, they possess an unmatched power to anchor lasting change. The Civil Rights Act threw open the door for legislation that strengthened voting rights and established fair housing standards for all Americans. Fifty years later, we know our country works best when we accept our obligations to one another, embrace the belief that our destiny is shared, and draw strength from the bonds that hold together the most diverse Nation on Earth.

As we reflect on the Civil Rights Act and the burst of progress that followed, we also acknowledge that our journey is not complete. Today, let us resolve to restore the promise of opportunity, defend our fellow Americans’ sacred right to vote, seek equality in our schools and workplaces, and fight injustice wherever it exists. Let us remember that victory never comes easily, but with iron wills and common purpose, those who love their country can change it.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim July 2, 2014, as the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act. I call upon all Americans to observe this day with programs, ceremonies, and activities that celebrate this accomplishment and advance civil rights in our time.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirtieth day of June, in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-eighth.

BARACK OBAMA

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111 Responses to “50th Anniversary of The Civil Rights Act”


  1. 1 57andfemale
    July 2, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    Seriously?

  2. July 2, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    Bringing this over from the bottom of the previous thread ….

    #OWNthe114th

    Yes WE MUST

  3. 33 Judith Fardig
    July 2, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    Yes, 57andfemale! Change makes many people anxious and angry, but it’s building a more just America whether they like it or not.
    Just got a text from Moms Demand saying Target finally backed down and asked customers to leave their (damn) guns at home.

    • 34 jackiegrumbacher
      July 2, 2014 at 2:07 pm

      Great, great news, Judith. Cheers for Moms Demand. They may just have saved lives.

  4. 35 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:11 pm

  5. 36 donna dem 4 obama
    July 2, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    About 20 years ago on MLK’s Holiday I called my cousin to check on her and she noticed that I was calling from work. She asked me what was I doing at work that day? I let her know that the company that I was working for at the time did not observe the MLK Holiday so I had to go in that day. She ripped me up one side and down the other reminding me of the struggle that others before me had gone through and that at the very least I should honor their struggle by not working on the day that we honor the most prominent person of the Civil Rights era even if it meant using a vacation day.

    It was a reality check that reminded me that I had begun to forget the history of the civil rights movement and the impact that it had on my life. Needless to say I never worked another MLK Holiday again. So many young people don’t even know of this past so it’s up to us to keep reminding them……

    • 37 0388jojothecat
      July 2, 2014 at 1:50 pm

      I applause your cousin for the reality check. If more people took vacation on MLK day then employers would take notice no one is working might as well adhere to the Federal holiday they are paying for it anyway. I’ve worked for state government and get it as paid holiday. Private industry has changed so much they barely want you to take vacation. My brother was only allowed five days of paid sick time after that you had to take vacation.

    • 39 Nerdy Wonka
      July 2, 2014 at 2:09 pm

      Bravo to your cousin and to you, Donna.

    • 40 Dudette
      July 2, 2014 at 2:34 pm

      Go Donna and Cousin!

    • 41 Dudette
      July 2, 2014 at 2:35 pm

      I have to take it as a vacation day. Typically use it to do some community service. Anything just as long as I’m serving others.

  6. 42 amk for obama
    July 2, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    • 43 GGail
      July 2, 2014 at 1:57 pm

      Ole bad azz boys! – playing in the water in their school uniforms. Now who do you think is gonna have to wash and iron those clothes?

    • 44 jacquelineoboomer
      July 2, 2014 at 2:18 pm

      Love that!

    • 45 vcprezofan2
      July 2, 2014 at 2:37 pm

      Because I’ve become acclimatized to ‘modern’ culture versus ‘when I was a child’, you know the first thing I thought on seeing this? Is this a bullying scenario? Is the boy in the water having as much fun as the boys who are standing? etc. etc. And my first answer was “I’m not sure, but I don’t think so.”

  7. July 2, 2014 at 1:17 pm

  8. 47 57andfemale
    July 2, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    Lest anyone forget……

  9. 50 donna dem 4 obama
    July 2, 2014 at 1:21 pm

  10. July 2, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    “While laws alone cannot right every wrong, they possess an unmatched power to anchor lasting change.” And speaking of guns, this is the answer to those who say laws won’t make a difference.

  11. 52 amk for obama
    July 2, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    aaaand fedex goes to semis in 4 sets. haha rafa.

  12. 53 amk for obama
    July 2, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    Iran has supplied Iraq with ground attack jets to help it counter the offensive led by the Islamist group Isis, strong evidence suggests.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-28125687

  13. 54 amk for obama
    July 2, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    Saudi Arabia: Sandwiched by jihadists in Iraq and Yemen.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-28133086

    Karma never fails.

  14. 55 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:37 pm

    • 56 jackiegrumbacher
      July 2, 2014 at 2:18 pm

      Dudette, this was the kind of SC Justice you could be proud of, not the current crop of right wing weasels who are busy destroying our democracy. I grew up with people like Marshall, Justice Douglas and and other great luminaries of that era.

  15. 57 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:39 pm

  16. 58 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    • 59 0388jojothecat
      July 2, 2014 at 1:58 pm

      SCOTUS Kagen clerked for Thurgood Marshall. She must have been real young because she is not that old or she just stays active that keeps her looking young.

  17. 62 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:41 pm

  18. 63 0388jojothecat
    July 2, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    I just realized that the HL case is not about religious freedom, birth control, or free speech. It is a back door way for the SCOTUS to overturn ACA. If 90% of companies ask that insurance companies exclude BC of any kind insurance companies will increase rates. I think of women trying to preserve Roe v Wade we should demand a constitutional amendment that adult men, women, and emancipated youth have the right and control of their bodies that No employer, government or court can interfere or intervene with any decision made between that person and their physician.

    • 65 Dudette
      July 2, 2014 at 1:51 pm

      That’s what I get for copying other people without checking. :-)

      • 66 donna dem 4 obama
        July 2, 2014 at 2:32 pm

        Another incredibly great martyr for the cause. As the field secretary for the NAACP he was constantly pushing the local radio and tv stations to air the civil rights movement that was taking place in the country. They would only give the white version of what was happening. Even if a black star like Sammy Davis Jr was on National tv and the show aired in the south the tv would just go black until his performance was over. They would not allow you to see or hear of any Blacks doing anything in the south.

        The NAACP sued his state and they finally relented and let him have some airtime. He spoke on the radio for 30 minutes about the Civil Rights cause. It gave him a higher profile in the state and one month after giving that speech on the radio he was assassinated in the driveway with his wife and children in their home.

        Another life sacrificed for my freedom!

        CNN actually did a special called “the 60’s” that a friend alerted me to over this past weekend and it cover a lot of these stories. It was actually quite good.

      • 67 vcprezofan2
        July 2, 2014 at 3:11 pm

        As I read today’s history reflective and the heroes/martyrs you ladies are highlighting, I am reminded of the ‘Ballad of Harry Moore’ – another whose life was taken because of his push for freedom. Listening to Sweet Honey in the Rock’s ballad was the first time I’d ever heard of Mr. Moore

        • 68 Dakota
          July 2, 2014 at 3:32 pm

          Love Sweet Honey.

          • 69 vcprezofan2
            July 2, 2014 at 3:37 pm

            Me too. Will never forget that Isonprize first brought them to my attention right here in the village.

        • 70 Dudette
          July 2, 2014 at 3:56 pm

          Oh this is a classic VC! I was introduced to Sweet Honey in the Rock’s music when I was at UNC. Love them! Thanks for posting this here.

          • 71 vcprezofan2
            July 2, 2014 at 6:00 pm

            YVW, D-ette. Though I like all their songs that I’ve played (on YouTube) I never get tired of listening to this particular one. Partly, I think, because it tells a true story, and introduced me to someone I had not heard of before.

  19. 72 EricFive
    July 2, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    Silly Season is officially in full swing. Let’s see, Boner initiates bogus lawsuit against PBO which serves to energize Dems, increasing fundraising and inspiring intelligent and impassioned mocking via the “SoSueMe#”. Then the Supreme Court issues a partisan anti-woman decision which served to energize and enrage Dems and make the GOP look like a party out of its time (and mind, next stop, theocracy). So what narrative is the MSM/GOP pushing today? PBO is the worst president ever according to a biased and bogus “poll”. chuck todd cheerily trumpets this bullshit (its the perfect companion to his “PBO’s presidency is over” nonsense from last week, which was “based” on skewed reading of a single poll question in a single poll). The MSM/GOP are feeling the heat, so they create anti-PBO headlines through manipulation (and often misinterpretation) of polls. Propaganda 101. The MSM/GOP are attempting to recreate the mood of 2010, but reality keeps interfering with their objective, so they are relying more and more on strategically timed polls to halt any momentum of the Dems. Trumpeting skewed polls and ignoring or burying news that can be viewed as positive for Dems (or the country) is the current tactic. Unfortunately for the GOP/MSM, this is not 2010. Dems seem more unified and are more angry at the GOP than they are with their own party. PBO is leading the party through both words and deeds. He has no fear of the GOP and is speaking truth. So is Harry Reid, who has really found his voice recently. In short, don’t fall for the propaganda which is designed to depress Dems. The over the top nature of their propagandizing tells me they are desperate, subtlety is out the window as they see their influence in dictating perceptions waning.

    • 73 amk for obama
      July 2, 2014 at 2:02 pm

      yup. goppers and their emmessem shills are despo.

    • 74 jackiegrumbacher
      July 2, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Very insightful,Eric. I agree with every word. And when we see people wavering, we know enough to point them back on the right path.

    • 75 hopefruit2
      July 2, 2014 at 2:47 pm

      Eric, I’ve said this before, and I’m saying it again: I would be more than happy to see your comment on a TOD front page. There are STILL Obama supporters out there who seem to believe those polls. I just corrected one on Twitter. These individuals seem unaware or unwilling to believe that the media and GOP are using bogus polling to manipulate the public into giving up on our President and his agenda. These individuals need to see, read, and heed insightful and accurate comments like yours on a regular basis to counteract the toxic and relentless media propaganda they are exposed to.

    • 76 Vicki
      July 2, 2014 at 2:48 pm

      precise and well written, Eric—TY

    • July 2, 2014 at 2:51 pm

      “In short, don’t fall for the propaganda which is designed to depress Dems. The over the top nature of their propagandizing tells me they are desperate, subtlety is out the window as they see their influence in dictating perceptions waning.”

      Yep. Well stated, Eric.

      #OWNthe114th

      Yes WE MUST

    • 78 sjterrid
      July 2, 2014 at 3:11 pm

      Excellent comment!, EricFive! Can you bring this comment to the new thread?

  20. 81 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:54 pm

    • 82 LDS
      July 2, 2014 at 4:07 pm

      This woman singing this song single-handed changed MY life forever!
      Growing up in the south under Jim Crow laws, I thought I was forgotten.
      She put what was in my heart in songs.
      In Georgia, Mississippi, Albama, South Carolina still impoverished and poor people are struggling in 2014. They and their President are hated because of the color of their skin. We can say VOTE! until your voice is sore, but when your stomach is empty, no job, no way to get to where you need to vote, looks of despise and hate by the so-called whites who are poorer than you.
      You just have to experience that for yourselves…….(I really pray you never will).
      Systematic racism has been going on for decades. The SCOTUS just proved that loud and clear.

      As the 4th of July approaches and we celebrate in our minds and hearts whatever we feel there is a need to celebrate, please remember that some little girl(like me) is feeling hopeless. Just pray for her and always for the President and his family.

    • July 2, 2014 at 9:47 pm

      Dudette, Medgar Evers was assassinated in 1963 not 1967? Did Nina Simone write the song in 1967? I have to look it up.

  21. 85 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 1:59 pm

  22. 86 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 2:00 pm

  23. 87 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 2:01 pm

  24. 88 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 2:07 pm

  25. 90 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 2:11 pm

  26. 91 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 2:14 pm

  27. 92 Dudette
    July 2, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    John Dingell is a national treasure!

  28. 97 57andfemale
    July 2, 2014 at 2:20 pm

  29. 99 anniebella
    July 2, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    So Barack Obama is the worst President of modern history, I’m going to say exactly what I want to say. That poll or polls are alot of Bull Shit. That racists white supremacist, KKK, Tea Party Republicans stinking Bull Shit. Excuse my language, but I have had enough of this racists B.S.

    • 100 anniebella
      July 2, 2014 at 2:32 pm

      From the day that man walk into that oval office, he and his family have faced such disrespect, hatred, racism in a country which claim to be a God fearing country.

    • 101 Vicki
      July 2, 2014 at 2:43 pm

      Mainstream Media polls are dumb and wrong.

      They said “Eric Canter is leading by 30 points.”
      They said Mitt didn’t need a concession speech.
      They said We had an enthusiasm gap. 2008 OFA got 1 million small donations. 2012 OFA got 3 million donations.
      They said “Hillary is inevitable.” Iowa said Barack Obama is 1st, John Edwards is 2nd, and Hillary is last..
      They said that dollars win elections. Rove went zero for a lot with the candidates he backed in 2013.
      They said that dollars win elections. Ask McDaniels (5 million) who lost to Thad Cochran—less than 1 million.

      Approval polls are only of value to the people who use them to direct opinion and the few left who want to believe anything they say.

  30. July 2, 2014 at 2:35 pm

  31. 104 japa21
    July 2, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    Folks, I am just going to ask that you bear with me while you read the following:

    50 years ago, the Civil Rights Act became law. As LBJ said at the time, doing so lost the South for a generation. (Actually, he underestimated a bit there).
    Also, the Civil Rights Act led to the GOP Southern Strategy which brought us Ronald Reagan, the President most responsible for much that is wrong in America today.
    Also the Civil Rights Act led, eventually, to the raise of the power of the Cristian Right Wing.
    The Civil Rights Act led, eventually, to the current Supreme Court and the major attempts by the GOP to undermine voting rights.
    And I can point out many things wrong in our society which sprung from the reaction to the Civil Rights Act.

    So, was it worth it with all these negatives?

    Hell, yes.

    For one thing, without it, PBO would not be President today. But there is so much more that would not exist without this having happened 50 years ago. The Civil Rights Act is the antecedent from which flowed many other things, laws to protect workers, women, children, the disabled, the LGTB community and many more.

    But here is another thing. If LBJ had not muscled through the CRA, who knows when anything like it may have been passed. Like the ACA, there is a time to grab for something and if the opportunity isn’t taken, another opportunity might not come around for a long time.

    We still have a long way to go, and as I have said several times, as a white male, I can only guess at what all the various minorities face.

    But I will say this. A lot of people who really weren’t all that aware of how much racism there was in the country, or who only thought it existed in the South had there eyes opened simply by the reaction to the CRA. And I think a lot more are getting their eyes opened by the reaction to PBO.

    Forward movement is never painless. And if we aren’t willing to endure the pain and the struggles, like jumping through hoops to vote, then we won’t move forward.

    It is one thing to complain about how the obstacles shouldn’t be there, it is another to do things despite the obstacles. And it was the willingness to do things despite the obstacles that ultimately resulted in this day 50 years ago. As has become a theme the last couple days, we owe it to those who endured then, and acted then, to endure now and act now, or, as Pierce put, we will deserve the country and the government that we get.

    • 105 donna dem 4 obama
      July 2, 2014 at 2:51 pm

      Thank you japa!!!!

      “Forward movement is never painless. And if we aren’t willing to endure the pain and the struggles, like jumping through hoops to vote, then we won’t move forward.”

      ^^^^THIS^^^^

    • 106 hopefruit2
      July 2, 2014 at 3:05 pm

      “Forward movement is never painless. And if we aren’t willing to endure the pain and the struggles, like jumping through hoops to vote, then we won’t move forward”

      Perfectly stated japa, and like EricFive’s post, your comment needs to be front-paged….And as PBO himself always cautioned us, the road will be long and the climb will be steep. But we have to PRESS ON just like those who did so with the CRA 50 years ago!

    • 107 sjterrid
      July 2, 2014 at 3:12 pm

      Great comment, Japa! you should post this comment on the new thread. Thank you.

    • 108 jacquelineoboomer
      July 2, 2014 at 4:01 pm

      Well said, John! Thank you for continuing to help open our eyes.

  32. 109 Vicki
    July 2, 2014 at 2:46 pm

    Good job, Japa. Our road is not going to be smooth but we can and will keep going with faith and energy.

  33. July 2, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    “And it was the willingness to do things despite the obstacles that ultimately resulted in this day 50 years ago. As has become a theme the last couple days, we owe it to those who endured then, and acted then, to endure now and act now, or, as Pierce put, we will deserve the country and the government that we get.”

    Thank you, John, for your very important perspective! Took no effort to ‘bear with’ you!!

    #OWNthe114th

    Yes WE MUST


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