The laws are still on the books in Virginia: Blacks and whites must sit in separate rail cars. They cannot use the same playgrounds, schools or mental hospitals. They can’t marry each other either.
The measures have not been enforced for decades, but they remain in the state’s official legal record. A state commission recommended that dozens of such discriminatory statutes finally be repealed, in some cases more than a century after they were adopted.
Although “some of these acts were rendered null and void by an amended Virginia Constitution, by landmark civil rights cases or legislation, it’s clear that they are vestiges of Virginia’s segregationist past that still sit on the books. ... We should not afford them the distinction of that official status,” said Chief Deputy Attorney General Cynthia Hudson, who led the panel of attorneys, judges, scholars and community leaders assigned to comb through the laws.
Benjamin Crump, a renowned civil rights attorney who represented the family of Trayvon Martin, the 17-year-old unarmed black boy who was fatally shot by George Zimmerman in 2012, blasted the $100 million lawsuit filed by Zimmerman on Wednesday as “unfounded and reckless.”
In an emailed statement made on behalf of himself and the parents of Martin — Sybrina Fulton, who is running for local office, and Tracy Martin — Crump said, “I have every confidence that this unfounded and reckless lawsuit will be revealed for what it is — another failed attempt to defend the indefensible and a shameless attempt to profit off the lives and grief of others.”
“This plaintiff continues to display a callous disregard for everyone but himself, revictimizing individuals whose lives were shattered by his own misguided actions,” he continued. “He would have us believe that he is the innocent victim of a deep conspiracy, despite the complete lack of any credible evidence to support his outlandish claims.”
“This tale defies all logic, and it’s time to close the door on these baseless imaginings,” he added.
Larry Klayman, a conservative activist and lawyer representing Zimmerman, confirmed to the Sun-Sentinel that a lawsuit against Crump, Martin’s parents and others involved in the case had been filed on Wednesday.
Studies show since the 1990's opioids were marketed more aggressively toward white rural areas that already had high prescription pain medicines.
Researchers believe, contrary to fact that this initial higher prescription rate was due to doctors racial biases that black people were more likely to sell the drugs, less likely to become addicted or could withstand more pain.
Researchers explain the racial bias could be unconscious. The accidental benefit of racial bias in this case was a rare case that actually helped shield African Americans from effects of the opioid epidemic.
The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law joined the Leadership Conference for Civil and Human Rights and other civil right and racial justice groups to urge the Senate to pass the Fostering Undergraduate Talent by Unlocking Resources for Education (FUTURE) Act, S. 1279 to restore funding for historically Black colleges and universities (HBCU) and minority serving institutions (MSIs)—which provide vital access to higher education for African Americans and other students of color.
The FUTURE Act, which passed the House of Representatives on September 17, would provide HBCUs and MSIs with $255-million of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) funding. Since then, the Senate has since failed to act and funding expired on September 30, leaving these vital institutions without critical funding for education in the STEM fields. The Lawyers’ Committee has long fought for access to educational opportunities for African Americans and equitable funding for HBCUs. One of our longstanding lawsuits, Coalition v. Maryland Higher Education Commission, advocates for the state of Maryland to more fairly fund and allocate programs to the state’s historically Black colleges and universities.