political and economic p.10 freedom; instead, many entered into a kind a continual
slavery based on low wages and servitude to political machines. They
will have a chance to duplicate your successes in the cities where they live now if
we are able to let them share in the protections now given to us.
As you watch - and hopefully, participate in - the struggle to extend voting rights
to all, let me hope that you can continue heightening your own power.
As Mayors, you have duties and responsiblities outlined in your city's charter, defined, perhaps
by the state legislature, limited, perhaps, by a hostile city council or county
But as Black men and women who have demonstrated that you have leadership abilities,
and that others will follow your lead, you have responsibilities greater than those
spelled out by law or limites by men.p.11
You have the responsibility to use your prestige, your power of persuasion and your
power of retribution to demand greater performance by those who serve above you.
A quick look at Black mayors in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi,
Louisiana, North and South Carolina, shows that [illegible] of you are mayors of cities
whose population is in one of the 31 Congressional Districts in those eight states
where the population is [illegible]% or more Black.
Yet only 3 of the 31 congressman from those districts voted with the rather moderate
aims of the Congressional Black Caucus more than 50% of the time, and one of these
The congressman, [illegible] Mayor Cooper, voted with the Black Caucus only [illegible] of
Notes and Questions
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