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When I heard that University of Maryland law school professor Sherrilyn Ifill had taken the reins of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, I was deep into the reading a new book about the early life of Thurgood Marshall.
2/01/13Related Case or Issue:
Broad Range of Briefs Urge the United States Supreme Court to Uphold a
Landmark Voting Rights Protection
Today, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee began a series of hearings on legislative proposals to prevent or reduce gun violence, in the aftermath of the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December. The hearing was entitled, "What Should America Do About Gun Violence." Among the featured witnesses were former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, herself a victim of gun violence.
Sherrilyn Ifill insists that this is the time to play offense, not defense.
Ifill, the new president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, said that organizations working to protect and expand the rights of African-Americans must forcefully push a proactive agenda instead of only react to legal decisions that affect minority Americans.
This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, and the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. The document and the event were separated by 100 years, but each spoke with equal clarity and urgency to the principles of liberty, equality and opportunity to which we aspire as a nation. There is perhaps no more important institution in keeping us on this path than the public education system. Yet, stark differences in the quality of education available to students of different races persist and demean us all.