Category Archives: National

Black Women Carry Jones to Victory

Black women were instrumental in leading new Alabama Senator Doug Jones to victory.

Black women were instrumental in leading new Alabama Senator Doug Jones to victory.

By Free Radical

In a stunning victory, Democratic soon to be Senator Doug Jones defeated controversial Republican candidate Roy Moore late Tuesday night. Alabama’s African-Americans community was among the first group of supporters he thanked, and for good reason.

Black people came out in droves to support Jones. They accounted for 30% of the electorate and 96% of their votes went for the Democratic candidate. Black women in particular showed up for Jones, contributing 98% of their votes to him while Black men gave 93% of their vote.

Democratic National Committee chair Tom Perez acknowledged, “Black women led us to victory. Black women are the backbone of the Democratic party.”

Black women and men provided their support for Jones despite what many have called a tepidly run campaign geared toward their interests. The most noted appeal from Jones was that as an attorney he secured guilty convictions for the murderers of four African-American girls at the 16th Street Baptist Church in 1963. Yet little beyond this plank of his campaign was catered towards African-Americans who frequently rank at the bottom of Alabama’s socioeconomic order.

Jones also brought African-American electoral professionals within the fold late into his campaign. According to Alabama State Rep Merika Coleman, “these professionals need to be included from the beginning of a campaign and not brought after a candidate has made mistakes in messaging to the black community. These blunders can be avoided by simply bringing their expertise and wisdom to the table in the onset of a political campaign.”

Such professionals were key in turning out the vote in the state’s largest cities such as Birmingham, Montgomery, and Mobile.  Quite fittingly, voting was especially high in Dallas County where the city of Selma is located. The historic campaign for suffrage there, which resulted in the Voting Rights Act of 1965, has helped make African-Americans the Democratic Party’s most loyal base.

Only time will tell if Jones has the acumen and courage to advocate for their interests in a traditionally Republican state  where the new senator will face another election in 2020

Mayor Lumumba Protests Trump Presence at Museum Opening

By MCNS Staff

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba Jr.

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba Jr.

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba and a significant list of elected officials protested President Donald Trump’s stop in Jackson, Mississippi for the opening of a Civil Rights Museum this past Saturday and instead attended a press conference with U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson, NAACP President Derrick Johnson along with other local leaders in order to pay homage to those who have dedicated their lives to the civil rights of Mississippians.

“I believe that Trump’s presence is a distraction. His policies don’t reflect his statements that this is a movement that will bring people together. Trump has not demonstrated a continuing dedication to the ideals the civil rights movement upholds,” Mayor Chokwe Lumumba told the Clarion Ledger.

Mayor Lumumba also said that he originally planned on attending the opening of the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum but changed his mind when he learned that he would not have an opportunity to speak at the event.

“I had some words that I wanted to say,” Mayor Lumumba said, “but when I found out that I wasn’t going to have the opportunity to speak, I decided that I didn’t want to share the stage with Trump.”

However, Mayor Lumumba did encourage others to attend the event. Additionally, he said he would visit the civil rights museum and Museum of Mississippi History, both of which opened this past Saturday after Trump left.

Bottoms Wins Runoff, Recount Looms

Atlanta's Mayor-Elect, Keisha Lance Bottoms.

Atlanta’s Mayor-Elect, Keisha Lance Bottoms.

By Free Radical

Early Wednesday morning, Keisha Lance Bottoms claimed victory in Atlanta’s mayoral race. Her defeat of independent Mary Norwood continues a string of Black Atlanta mayors since 1973.

Bottoms and Norwood emerged from a group of 13 candidates in the general election to make it to Tuesday’s runoff, which Bottoms won by less than 1%.

The slim margin of victory, which was only 759 votes, allowed Norwood’s campaign to promptly call for a recount. Yet, such procedures are usually unsuccessful.

In her victory speech, Bottoms proclaimed, “And so for all the little girls out there who need somebody to believe that you’re better than your circumstances. I need you all to remember that black girl magic is real.”

Bottoms, who formerly served on Atlanta’s City Council is a graduate of Florida A&M University and received a law degree from Georgia State University. She went on to be an attorney, judge, and executive director of Atlanta Fulton County Recreation Authority.

Atlanta’s mayoral race caught national attention, drawing the likes of Black US Senators Kamala Harris and Corey Booker as well as Congresswoman Maxine Waters in support of Bottoms. The city, which has become an internationally recognized metropolis under the leadership of Black mayors, came very close to being headed by a White leader again. The fact that it was so close, alerted people to decades of gentrification in which the city has attracted larger numbers of White residents, who in some cases, have displaced Blacks.

Bottoms’s victory caps off a momentous year when Black women have captured the mayoral seats of major southern cities. Earlier this year, Vi Lyles and Latoya Cantrell won mayoral races in Charlotte and New Orleans respectively.

Flint Has Permanent Water Source

By Free Radical

Per their new contract, Flint will get water from the same source as Detroit.

Per their new contract, Flint will get water from the same source as Detroit.

The predominantly Black city of Flint, which has been burdened with an unsafe water supply for years, has just gotten approval to change its water source to the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA) for the next thirty years.

Flint has used GLWA, which uses water from Lake Huron and the Detroit River, since October 2015 after multiple complaints of lead from city residents.

The 5-4 vote by Flint’s City Council ensures that the city will have the same water source as Detroit as was the case before Flint’s water crisis.

Along with the change of water source, GLWA has agreed that it will not hold Flint liable in the event of a lawsuit, the city will have a seat on GLWA’s water authority board, $750,000 will be set aside for unpaid water bills,and Michigan governor Rick Snyder will ask General Motors to return to using the city’s water supply.

In a controversial deal, the city manager allowed GM to begin using water form a Flint Township. The loss of GM costs the city $400,000 annually and most city council members had no knowledge of the deal. It was symptomatic of the lack of transparency that made the Flint water crisis so egregious.

Perhaps the most important component of the new agreement with GWLA is that $100 million will be set aside to replace Flint’s corroded pipes. However Flint water will not be safe for years as the new pipes will not be installed until 2020.