By Shatondra Caldwell
Civil Rights leader, the Rev. Joseph E. Lowery, encouraged the students at Clark Atlanta University to exercise their right to vote so that their voices may be heard in this year’s upcoming election.
With the upcoming election right around the corner the Rev.Joesph E Lowery stated, “Vote because you have the right to vote.” Voting was a key factor on Tuesday’s at CAU’s convocation and has heavily impacted students to register to vote. Rev. Lowerv reminded students that voting is not a luxury but a privilege and theses privileges should be used for the betterment of our community.
In the 2008 inauguration, the rev. Lowery read the benediction for President Barack Obama calling it the most memorable moment of his life.
“Our first African American president still fighting the fight for our community.” the Rev. Lowery stated. The fight continues as the voting and registration laws have changed and many people have not been informed on theses changes. The students of CAU were urged to make their voices known, inform themselves with the new laws, and make their votes count.
References to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King and most recent case of Trayvon Martin inspired the students to vote. The rev. Lowery makes a point that Civil right leaders fought and died to receive their votes, but many of the young people today our dying before they have fought the battle to make their votes count. As the founder of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, Lowery reassures students that with every vote comes a voice and with every voice comes a change, a change to not only the African American community but also America, as students know it today.
This year’s convocation speech touched the hearts of students at Clark Atlanta University. Registration booths were up after the convocation speech, which extended the invitation that the Rev. Lowery gave to all students, to go vote.
With students now taking a stand for their right to vote, what will this upcoming election say for the African American students of America? Clark Atlanta University junior Theresa Jones stated, “After this speech I have, become motivated to exercise my right to vote and be a voice not in the background but in the foreshadow.” This year’s convocation has made students step out of the background and stand for their rights.
With the Joseph E. Lowery Institute for Justice and Human Rights established in 2001 for Clark Atlanta University’s 80th birthday, many students can now be informed with forums and laboratories for research and analysis on issues related to human rights, workers rights and most importantly voter’s right.
Voting season is right around the corner and now with the encouragement from a great leader like the rev. Joseph E. Lowery, many students are ready to hit the polls on November 6 and make their voices heard.