The law banned discrimination in employment and in

This preview shows page 19 - 26 out of 50 pages.

The law banned discrimination in employment and in public accommodations.
Voting Rights The Main Idea In the 1960s, African Americans gained voting rights and political power in the South, but only after a bitter and hard-fought struggle. Reading Focus What methods did civil rights workers use to gain voting rights for African Americans in the South? How did African American political organizing become a national issue? What events led to passage of the Voting Rights Act?
Gaining Voting Rights for African Americans in the South Voting rights for African Americans were achieved at great human cost and sacrifice. President Kennedy was worried about the violent reactions to the nonviolent methods of the civil rights movement. Attorney General Robert Kennedy urged SNCC leaders to focus on voter registration rather than on protests. He promised that the federal government would protect civil rights workers if they focused on voter registration. The Twenty-fourth Amendment outlawed the practice of taxing citizens to vote. Hundreds of people volunteered to spend their summers registering African Americans to vote.
Gaining Voting Rights Registering Voters SNCC, CORE, and other groups founded the Voter Education Project (VEP) to register southern African Americans to vote. Opposition to African American suffrage was great. Mississippi was particularly hard—VEP workers lived in daily fear for their safety. VEP was a success—by 1964 they had registered more than a half million more African American voters. Twenty-fourth Amendment Congress passed the Twenty-fourth Amendment in August 1962. The amendment banned states from taxing citizens to vote—for example, poll taxes. It applied only to elections for president or Congress.
Gaining Voting Rights Freedom Summer Hundreds of college students volunteered to spend the summer registering African Americans to vote. The project was called Freedom Summer . Most of the trainers were from poor, southern African American families. Most of the volunteers were white, northern, and upper middle class. Volunteers registered voters or taught at summer schools. Crisis in Mississippi Andrew Goodman, a Freedom Summer volunteer, went missing on June 21, 1964. Goodman and two CORE workers had gone to inspect a church that had recently been bombed. President Johnson ordered a massive hunt for the three men. Their bodies were discovered near Philadelphia, Mississippi. 21 suspects were tried in federal court for violating civil rights laws.
The Results of Project Freedom Summer Organizers considered Mississippi’s Freedom Summer project a success. The Freedom Schools taught 3,000 students. More than 17,000 African Americans in Mississippi applied to vote. State elections officials accepted only about 1,600 of the 17,000 applications. This helped show that a federal law was needed to secure voting rights for African Americans.
How did African American political organizing become a national issue?

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture