Reverend Barber Outlines His Future, Says There’s Still a Fight Ahead in North Carolina | News
News
INDY Week's news blog

Archives | RSS

Monday, May 15, 2017

Reverend Barber Outlines His Future, Says There’s Still a Fight Ahead in North Carolina

Posted by on Mon, May 15, 2017 at 7:15 PM

click to enlarge The Reverend William Barber - PHOTO BY BEN MCKEOWN
  • Photo by Ben McKeown
  • The Reverend William Barber
More than a hundred people converged on the Davie Street Presbyterian Church Monday morning to pay their respects to the Reverend William Barber, a local civil rights icon who announced late last week that he would be stepping down as the leader of the North Carolina NAACP. But after more than a dozen friends, colleagues, and faith leaders offered praise to the man who has led them for more than a decade—Barber was elected president of the organization in 2005—Barber sought to shift the focus off of himself.

Indeed, what transpired this morning couldn’t have been scripted any better for those activists on hand. Moments before the press conference began, the Supreme Court announced that it had declined to hear a challenge to a ruling last year that struck down numerous components of the North Carolina voting law enacted by the Republican legislature in 2013. Barber, who despite his larger-than-life persona is known for deflecting praise, seized the moment. This victory, he told them, was worth savoring.

So as the news was delivered, he rose to his feet, lifting his arms and calling for those who turned out to honor him to honor one another for standing up to the lawmakers who attempted to limit rights he characterized as God-given. Nearly an hour later, when he addressed those in attendance, he told them that his new path wasn’t about William Barber, but rather picking up where those who “shoulders we stand on” left off.


Barber’s decision to step down was, he said, his answer to a call from God to organize a revived “Poor People’s Campaign”—the Poor People’s Campaign of 1968 was a creation of Martin Luther King Jr.—and “breathe new fire and energy into the torch of justice” lit nearly fifty years ago.

“This is not a commemoration. We’re not doing this for one year and quit. This is a launching. This is the beginning of a movement to shift the national moral narrative,” Barber said, adding that he would spend much of his time on “on the road,” fighting alongside those living in poverty across the nation. “This is bigger than Donald Trump because he and his election … are a symptom of a larger moral deficit. … This call is not some ego trip. This is about hearing the voices of so many.”

But Barber warned the crowd to remain vigilant in his absence, reminding them that while his future is in Washington and across the country, the rights of North Carolinians are still under attack. For that reason, he said, he would stay active in the state NAACP and his Goldsboro church.

“If there’s a need to march and move in North Carolina, I’m a homeboy,” he said. “I’m not going anywhere. My roots run deep in North Carolina.”


Tags: , , , , ,

Pin It

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in News



Twitter Activity

Comments

It would have better served the community to televise the debate on one of the local news channels. Many of …

by K. K. on Raleigh Mayoral Rivals Nancy McFarlane, Charles Francis to Tape Debate That Will Air Friday and Sunday (News)

According to this reporting, Mayor Bell seems to be endorsing Ali primarily to keep Steve Schewel on the Council because …

by Linda Belans on Bill Bell Endorses Farad Ali for Mayor of Durham (News)

Most Recent Comments

It would have better served the community to televise the debate on one of the local news channels. Many of …

by K. K. on Raleigh Mayoral Rivals Nancy McFarlane, Charles Francis to Tape Debate That Will Air Friday and Sunday (News)

According to this reporting, Mayor Bell seems to be endorsing Ali primarily to keep Steve Schewel on the Council because …

by Linda Belans on Bill Bell Endorses Farad Ali for Mayor of Durham (News)

So I guess the only question open in this election is:
Who, if anyone, does Pierce Freelon endorse?
(As …

by JoeJoey on Bill Bell Endorses Farad Ali for Mayor of Durham (News)

Yes, I really hope this is put on YouTube or something. It would maximize voter reach, especially as there are …

by JohnnyDollar on Raleigh Mayoral Rivals Nancy McFarlane, Charles Francis to Tape Debate That Will Air Friday and Sunday (News)

We are lucky to have had such a primary field of bright, excellent, visionary candidates for Mayor of Durham, and …

by Sam M-B on Bill Bell Endorses Farad Ali for Mayor of Durham (News)

© 2017 Indy Week • 320 E. Chapel Hill St., Suite 200, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation