NAACP: The call for equal rights in the U.S.

Tue, 08/12/2008 - 3:38pm
By: Letters to the ...

Founded on Feb. 12, 1909, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People known as the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. The organization will celebrate its centennial at its 100th Annual Convention in New York City during July 2009.

Its organizers, whites and blacks alike, worked tirelessly side-by-side [99 years ago] creating a written statement titled “The Call.” Drafted by New York Evening Post newspaper publisher, Oswald Garrison Villard, it demanded racial equality and requested a conference on race relations.

The conference was a challenge because some African American attendees initially seemed wary of the group’s white leaders. The conference turned out to be of greatest value bringing the two races together.

Dozens of influential organizers and leaders signed the document, including Mary White Ovington, William English Walling, Jane Adams, The Independent Newspaper editors William Ward and Hamilton Holt, Bishop Alexander Walters of the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, philosopher John Dewey, journalist Ida B. Wells-Barnett, and sociologist W.E.B. DuBois.

As described in “The Call,” the National Negro Conference occurred in New York on May 31 and June 1, 1909. Speakers detailed the social conditions that African-Americans faced. Resolutions addressed civil, educational rights, labor issues and violence problems. The black church was the pivotal gathering place for civil rights leaders and workers of the NAACP during the 1900s.

A committee of 40 was assigned the task of evaluating different names for the new organization. They considered but rejected, “Committee on the Negro” and “Committee on the Status of the Negro.”

By May 1910, the group had settled on the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The name was cumbersome, but advancement accurately stated the group’s goal and quest for equal rights.

Organizers formally incorporated the NAACP in 1911. All but one of its first officers was white. The exception was W.E.B. DuBois, who served as director of publicity and research.

Today, NAACP members comprise people of many ethnic groups who reside throughout the United States and the world. They volunteer their time as premier advocates for civil rights for everyone in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.

The National NAACP staff comprises licensed attorneys, physicians and people of many other professions. The states, regions and local units of the NAACP are organized under the national office to address civil rights matters and racial inequality that occurs within their boundaries.

The local unit, Fayette County Branch NAACP, was chartered during 1997 through the NAACP national office. Mr. John E. Jones is currently president of the Fayette County Branch and he works full-time as a commercial airline pilot.

A tough challenge taken on by Mr. Jones, he manages to lead the branch in the fight for equal rights and justice in Fayette County. Mr. Jones says “building membership to continue the works of the NAACP is the key to success of our Branch.”

The Branch is now planning for its only annual fund-raiser, the 11th Annual Freedom Fund Banquet scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 1, 2008, 6 p.m. at the Wyndham Conference Center in Peachtree City. Support of this event helps to continue the programs and services sponsored by the Fayette County Branch.

Strong, committed and dedicated leadership is evident of the 100 years existence of the NAACP, and still today it is one of the strongest, largest civil rights organizations around.

On Feb. 12, 2009, as we celebrate the 100th birthday of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, we look to local leaders to proclaim this date in honor of those who work tirelessly and dedicated their life to the call for equal rights.

Geraldine Holt

Alice Jones

press & publicity members

Fayette County Branch NAACP

Fayetteville, Ga.

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Submitted by Vernon on Wed, 08/13/2008 - 11:56am.

The NAACP, Unions, Welfare, and other Govt. assisted programs all started out with a great idea and purpose, but somewhere along the way they have turned into usless programs and organizations. The NAACP's retoric is as racist to white people as the KKK's retoric is to black people, neither are worth listening to.

Submitted by AmdZar on Tue, 09/30/2008 - 7:50am.

I am a white person that has experienced civil rights violations and the NAACP is the ONLY group of people to step in and see to it that what was done to me stops now and that the ones guilty of this crime are prosecuted. You think that just because they represent the black community that they do not care about the white people? This is completely innacurate. I have been battling this issue for 4 years and not ONCE did a white person come to my aid. But it was the NAACP that is stepping in and getting justice for my family. To all the haters, you are the racist ones.

Submitted by Teilnehmer on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 10:20pm.

Has anyone besides me noticed that these pathetic Jones people are relics of the past? They are stuck in the 1960's. I am sick of their whiny letters. Why don't they do something constructive?

Fred Garvin's picture
Submitted by Fred Garvin on Tue, 08/12/2008 - 8:35pm.

"A tough challenge taken on by Mr. Jones, he manages to lead the branch in the fight for equal rights and justice in Fayette County."

Exactly what rights is Mr. Jones fighting for that are not provided to everyone? We all have equal rights under the law, and justice is handed out equally by our courts.

Submitted by AmdZar on Tue, 09/30/2008 - 7:52am.

There is no justice in juvenile courts. So what exactly is being done by the NAACP? I suggest you all find out on November 8. The NAACP is helping so many people and I have personally been talking with the VP who is tsking care of my case. What are they all doing? What the white people wouldn't do for their own.

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