For more than 94 years the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has led the way in promoting initiatives targeted towards positively advancing the black community.
In the spirit of this objective, the Florida A&M University Chapter of the NAACP kicked off a voter registration program, Promote the Vote, Wednesday evening in Lee Hall with the Political Organization Committee to both register and inform minority voters about the vast importance of the voting process.
Representatives from the NAACP and the Political Organization Committee, campus and community leaders, expressed their personal appreciation for the necessity of voting during the panel discussion. Among the speakers was Arturo Lugisse, Royal Ambassador to the Caribbean Government.
“We must create a platform for not only [ourselves], but for the next generation as well,” Lugisse said, which resonated among those in attendance and was referred to on several instances.
The 2000 Presidential Election was for many, the first time in which the importance of registration and voting was realized and serves as a reminder of the challenges still set before much of the minority population.
“The 2000 Election has increased awareness amongst younger minorities”, said Kevin Joseph, FAMU NAACP Economic Development Co-Chair.
A third year business student, Joseph, 20, further expressed the impact of the election on the FAMU community, saying, “Witnessing [the discrepancies] has increased interest amongst FAMU students.”
Immediately following the 2000 elections, many in the community stepped forward to increase voter awareness and minority voting.
Broadus Perry, FAMU NAACP President, a 20-year-old native of Jacksonville, along with NAACP members has spearheaded the Promote the Vote program.
“Everything revolves around politics,” he said. “It is our generation’s responsibility to set positive standards for the younger community by promoting change now.”
The upcoming Presidential Election is perhaps the most significant in many years for the minority community. Feelings of betrayal and disillusionment still linger from the results of the 2000 Election. In order for change to occur, young minorities must make their voices heard by educating themselves and voting. Significant change is possible, and perhaps this movement will stand as one of this generation’s greatest contributions.
Steven Jumper18 years oldFreshmanWashington, DC