At one time, state and local poll taxes were common throughout the country, but by the mid-20th Century they are mainly limited to the South as a means of preventing Blacks and poor whites from voting.
We're tired of it, so we're going to build for ourselves, because we don't have a government that represents us. — Unita Blackwell, MFDP. For continuation
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Reflecting (and to some degree instigating) this "white-backlash," are significant portions of the national news media that by 1966 are shifting their emphasis, focusing less on the oppression and injustice of southern segregationists and more on "black militants," "black nationalism," and even "black racism."
It derives from the same attitude of extremism for the sake of extremism that prevailed in the senseless demonstration against Sargent Shriver in last week's anti-poverty conference in Washington and in the refusal of the Mississippi Freedom Democrats to accept a generous compromise worked out in their behalf at the 1964 Democratic National Convention. While the gentlemen from the have little influence among Lowndes County residents (Black or white), they do have significant sway among the northern liberals who provide a major portion of SNCC's funding.
And ongoing protests in the North against job & housing discrimination, segregated schools, and police brutality, stir resentment and resistance among many northern whites.
In every corner of every continent men charged with hope contend with ancient ways in the pursuit of justice." He goes on to speak eloquently of justice and racism, freedom and equality; of poverty and its roots in society, of "," and the "" During his address, he announces a large-scale White House conference on civil and economic rights whose theme and title will also be "To Fulfill These Rights." It will bring together government officials, Movement leaders and grassroots activists, and representatives from business, labor, academia and religion.
We gonna protect our friends this time"Some 900 Black voters, most of them wearing their Sunday-best suits and dresses, cast their ballots for LCFO candidates at the convention.
By long custom, political meetings have been held in the courthouse square, but Sheriff Ryals refuses to allow Blacks to gather there because, he claims, he "cannot protect" them.
And in the North, Democratic leaders are starting to fear that race issues may cause northern white working-class voters to also abandon the party of FDR for the party of Nixon.
Meanwhile Assistant Secretary of Labor (and later NY Senator) Daniel Moynihan issues his controversial "Moynihan Report" in which he links Black poverty and unemployment to the rise within Negro communities of single-parent families and out-of-wedlock births.
Other than the courthouse, all of those places are at white-owned locations, so the courthouse in Hayneville is the only option for the Black Panther convention.
Until passage of the and Acts, the common goals of dismantling formal, , segregation in the South, winning voting rights for Blacks and other nonwhites, and the necessity of mutual support against state repression, economic retaliation, and terrorist violence had functioned as a kind of gravity holding people and groups together in a degree of limited unity.
At a mass meeting three weeks later, courageous Lowndes County activists announce their intention to seek the Black Panther party nomination as candidates in the November general election.
While the NAACP and Urban League also speak about issues of poverty, they mainly continue their traditional programs aimed at serving and expanding the small Black middle-class (teachers, ministers, professionals, land-owning small farmers, and business proprietors).
But the sharpest disagreements are over substance — poverty & powerlessness, role of the Black family, urban violence, police & repression, unions & worker rights, business and profit, role of the federal government and expansion of its powers, and equal opportunity versus affirmative action.