Voting Rights Act at 50 Event with the NAACP!

NMAAHC -- National Museum of African American History and Culture

NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund:
The Voting Rights Act at 50:
Restoring the Rights that Transformed America

Tuesday, July 21, 2015, 7 – 9 PM EDT
American History Museum, Warner Bros. Theater
14th St and Constitution Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20001

Please enter through Constitution Avenue NW doors

Sponsored by the National Museum of African American History and Culture

Take the Orange, Blue or Silver Line to Federal Triangle or Smithsonian Metro stations


Welcoming remarks will be made by our own Rex M. Ellis, Ph.D., Associate Director of Curatorial Affairs, NMAAHC, and by Janai Nelson, Associate Director-Counsel NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (LDF).

Then, join Sherilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, Spencer R. Crew, Robinson Professor of History, George Mason University, Ari Berman, contributing writer to The Nation, and Henry “Hank” Sanders, Democrat, Alabama State Senate as they explore the historic legacy of the NAACP-LDF. The moderated discussion will examine the organization’s 75 years of social justice leadership related to ending school segregation while championing voter rights, education equity, fair housing and other issues critical to full citizenship.

The discussion will be moderated by Donna Brazile, political strategist, adjunct professor, author, and syndicated columnist.

Registration is suggested. As space allows, walk-ups will be welcome. To make a reservation, please follow this link:

For more information about the event, please email or call 202-633-1000.

You can watch this event by following this link on the day of the event:

Bees are dying

Petitioning EPA, Environmental Protection Agency

Ban the chemical that’s killing our bees

Petition by Nancy Addison
Dallas, Texas

The pope hits a triple

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Help the Senate Advance Climate Education!

Right now the Senate is voting to revamp the sweeping No Child Left Behind Act.

Senator Markey (D-MA) has introduced an important amendment to include more funding for climate change education!  His Climate Change Education Act states that “the evidence for human-induced climate change is overwhelming and undeniable.”

Let’s help make this a reality!

The amendment sets up a federal program to improve climate education by broadening the understanding of human-induced climate change, providing learning opportunities for climate science education for all students, and emphasizing actionable information.

At the same time, Senator Wicker (R-MS), a climate change skeptic, is pushing an amendment to provide states with materials outlining the “natural causes and cycles of climate change.” This amendment obscures the scientific consensus on the human causes of climate change. Too often we have seen politicians try to push back or block climate education.

We need to equip our students with information on climate change so that they can be leaders in tomorrow’s green economy. Let’s act now and show our overwhelming support to Senator Markey’s Climate Change Education Act!

Tell your senator to support the Climate Change Education Act NOW!

Badges Of Progress … CAP


The Military And The Boy Scouts Take Positive Steps Towards LGBT Non-Discrimination

Less than three weeks since the Supreme Court made same-sex marriage the law of the land nationwide, two organizations with complicated histories surrounding LGBT equality—the United States Armed Forces and the Boy Scouts of America—have taken positive steps towards ending discrimination against LGBT individuals.

On Monday, Secretary Ash Carter announced that the Pentagon will allow transgender people to serve openly in the military. “We have transgender soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines — real, patriotic Americans — who I know are being hurt by an outdated, confusing, inconsistent approach that’s contrary to our value of service and individual merit,” Sec. Carter said.

Unlike Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, which was a law passed by Congress, the trans ban is a military policy that can be changed by the Defense Department alone. When the new policy takes effect sometime within the next six months, the estimated 15,000 transgender service members currently serving in secret will be able to serve openly, and the ban on transgender enrollment will be lifted.

The military’s decision came in tandem with another group’s unanimous decision to expand equal rights to its members. On Monday, the Boy Scouts of America voted to end its longstanding ban on gay scout leaders. This follows another important development made in 2014 when the Boy Scouts lifted their ban on openly gay youth in the program. Beyond allowing new gay leaders to apply, the vote also opens the opportunity for previously removed leaders to seek their former positions. The decision prohibits regional governing bodies from discriminating by virtue of sexual orientation; however, it allows local troops to establish their own eligibility systems, which may also exclude gay applicants.

But these long overdue moments of inclusivity were not universally praised. The Family Research Council has opposed the military’s actions, claiming that “no new science” contributed to the military’s decision to lift the ban, even though the ban is incredibly outdated by all accounts. The Boy Scouts’ actions were also met with criticism, despite the fact that many chapters across the country had long opposed the ban .

Conservative opposition aside, these actions represent significant progress. But there is still much more work to be done. In 28 states, a same-sex couple can be legally married one day, and legally fired from their jobs the next. We must continue building on recent weeks’ progress to ensure comprehensive legislation to outlaw LGBT discrimination.

BOTTOM LINE: While the decisions by the Boy Scouts and the Department of Defense are steps forward for LGBT rights, the fight for equality is not over. These milestones remind us that whether it’s the uniform of a Scout or a soldier, comprehensive equality must be stitched into the fabric of our laws.