ACLU Archives: The Enduring History of the Civil Rights Movement

The Civil Rights Movement marked an intense period of racial tension and violence, as Black communities organized to fight for equal rights, justice, and human dignity. While the impact of this movement spanned the nation, there's a reason Alabama is called the "birthplace of civil rights." From the spawning of Dr. Martin Luther King’s influence, to Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott, to the Selma-to- Montgomery march, the Freedom Riders, and the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham—this state has been witness to great tragedy and great triumph. 

However, that fight has not ended. Black communities in Alabama are still disproportionately affected by socio-economic conditions that enable lack of equity through education, discriminatory employment practices, a racially charged criminal justice system, and voter disenfranchisement.

We will be highlighting moments from the Civil Rights Movement, both in Alabama and across the Southeast, in order to discuss the forces that are still perpetuating these racial disparities today.

ACLU Archives: Selma-to-Montgomery Marches

The march from Selma-to-Montgomery, led by Martin Luther King, Jr., is an iconic and memorable moment during the Civil Rights Movement and in U.S. History, but to understand its significance in time, it is helpful to place it in context with the South's resistance to racial integration.

March 7, 2018 Racial Justice

ACLU Archives: Jimmie Lee Jackson

On February 18, 1965, Jimmie Lee Jackson was shot in the stomach while unarmed and defending his mother from being beaten by law enforcement during a peaceful protest. He died on February 26 and is attributed to sparking the Selma-to-Montgomery marches that set the stage for the Voting Rights Act.

February 16, 2018 Racial Justice

ACLU Archives: Orangeburg Massacre

50 years ago today, in Orangeburg, South Carolina, nine White highway patrolmen opened fire on a group of unarmed Black college students who were peacefully assembled to protest a bowling alley's refusal to allow them service. This use of excessive force killed three students and wounded 27 others.

February 8, 2018 Racial Justice