Fannie Lou Hamer: A Political Bright Light that Still Shines

By Glynda C. Carr

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 If Fannie Lou Hamer were alive to celebrate her 100th birthday this past October 6th, she would certainly take pride in the way Black women continue to push this country toward honoring its promise of freedom and equality for all. From founding movements such as Black Lives Matter to our status as the country’s fastest-growing segment of small business owners, Black women have historically been at the forefront of this country’s political, economic and human-rights advancement.

It’s been 53 years since Hamer, a former share cropper who was instrumental in organizing Black voter registration in the south, led the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party’s (MFDP) delegates to the 1964 Democratic National Convention in Atlantic City, NJ. There, she stood toe-to-toe with President Lyndon B. Johnson, who was seeking reelection.  She demanded that he and other party leaders let the delegates, who’d been elected by more than 80,000 Black and poor White Mississippians, be seated and allowed to exercise their right to vote during the party’s nominating process.

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Last week, ABC’s new show The Mayor premiered, telling the story of a 27-year-old rapper-turned-mayor. The Mayor challenges us to reconsider who can run for office – and what they can accomplish once they’re there.

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September 2016 #SundayBrunch

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