I joined millions of Americans on the morning of April 28, 2010 to watch the celebration of the life of Civil Rights activist and women's right's icon Dorothy Height. As a black woman now living across more than seven decades and in to the 21st century, I was born colored and became Negro, black and African American. While Ms. Height and the National Council for Negro Women had a tremendous impact on my life, I remain forever clear that I owe a debt of gratitude to the Civil Rights Movement of the '60s and '70s.
But my deepest debt goes to SNCC (The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee). Some were of its members were still navigating the path from puberty into adolescents, while others were moving from their formative years into a more well-seasoned maturity, the organizers and field workers of SNCC should have won a Nobel Peace Prize for the role they played in addressing racism and working to secure voting rights especially for black people denied access to one of the essentials a democracy. Not only did they stand up to the Ku Klux Klan, they also paved so many ways for black men and women to serve at the highest levels of office in the land.
According to the [Nobel] committee, "The Nobel Peace Prize may be awarded to persons or organizations that are in the process of resolving a conflict or creating peace." SNCC played a major role in strategically charting a powerful course instrumental in changing the social justice policies and cultural landscape of the country. It was both a civil rights and human rights organization like no other. Today, the SNCC Legacy Project stands on that unwavering foundation established when it was founded in April of 1960. The organization continues its voting rights and educational initiatives that include SNCC Digital Gateway: Learn From the Past, Organize for the Future, Make Democracy Work. SNCC's persistence around voting rights has served as a clarion call for voting rights initiatives around the world. As the work for voting rights and the Legacy Project continues, I still strongly feel that SNCC/The SNCC Legacy Project should be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.
Copyright © Daphne Muse
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