SUBMITTED RESOLUTIONS; Congressional Record Vol. 162, No. 92
(Senate - June 10, 2016)

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[Pages S3796-S3797]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                         SUBMITTED RESOLUTIONS

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SENATE RESOLUTION 488--RECOGNIZING THE HISTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE AND THE 
  50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE ``JAMES H. MEREDITH MARCH AGAINST FEAR'', A 
  220-MILE WALK DOWN HIGHWAY 51 FROM MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE, TO JACKSON, 
                              MISSISSIPPI

  Mr. WICKER (for himself, Mr. Cochran, and Mrs. Shaheen) submitted the 
following resolution; which was considered and agreed to:

                              S. Res. 488

       Whereas the Supreme Court of the United States, in Brown v. 
     Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954), ruled that 
     separating children in public schools on the basis of race 
     violates the 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United 
     States;
       Whereas in the years following Brown v. Board of Education, 
     347 U.S. 483 (1954), some Southern States, including the 
     State of Mississippi, continued to uphold racial segregation;
       Whereas, in 1962, the first African-American integrated the 
     University of Mississippi (referred to in this preamble as 
     ``Ole Miss'');
       Whereas, in 1965, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (52 U.S.C. 
     10301 et seq.), which passed Congress with bipartisan support 
     and was signed by President Lyndon Johnson, prohibited racial 
     discrimination in voting;
       Whereas, in 1966, 4 years after integration, the first 
     African-American student at Ole Miss planned a 220-mile march 
     from Memphis, Tennessee, to Jackson, Mississippi (referred to 
     in this preamble as the ``Meredith March Against Fear'')--
       (1) to challenge the fear that dominated the day-to-day 
     lives of African-Americans in the Southern United States, 
     specifically in the State of Mississippi; and
       (2) to encourage the 450,000 unregistered African-Americans 
     in the State of Mississippi to register to vote and to go to 
     the polls;
       Whereas, on June 5, 1966, the historic Meredith March 
     Against Fear began at the Peabody Hotel in downtown Memphis, 
     Tennessee;
       Whereas the self-reliant and determined leader of the 
     Meredith March Against Fear carried no food, clothing, or 
     sleeping bag, and was joined only by a small number of 
     African-American supporters and Whites from the North;
       Whereas on reaching the border between the States of 
     Tennessee and Mississippi, the marchers were greeted with 
     hostility;
       Whereas, on June 6, 1966, the Meredith March Against Fear 
     continued south along United States Highway 51 through DeSoto 
     County toward the town of Hernando, Mississippi;
       Whereas 150 African-American men and women greeted the 
     marchers at the town square in Hernando, Mississippi;
       Whereas the visit of the marchers to Hernando, Mississippi, 
     embodied the purpose of the Meredith March Against Fear, ``to 
     explain [to African Americans] that the old order was 
     passing, that they should stand up as men with nothing to 
     fear'';
       Whereas, on June 6, 1966, about 1 mile south of Hernando, 
     Mississippi, the leader of the Meredith March Against Fear 
     was shot 3 times by an attempted assassin;
       Whereas, on June 7, 1966, national civil rights leaders, 
     including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Floyd McKissick, and 
     Stokely Carmichael, resumed the Meredith March

[[Page S3797]]

     Against Fear while their leader recovered from the attempted 
     assassination;
       Whereas, over the next 3 weeks, the marchers weathered 
     violence and tear gas, but accomplished what the Meredith 
     March Against Fear set out to accomplish;
       Whereas voter rallies and drives along United States 
     Highway 51 resulted in more than 4,000 African-Americans 
     registering to vote;
       Whereas the Meredith March Against Fear featured many 
     African-Americans defying the intimidation of hostile Whites;
       Whereas, on June 25, 1966, the leader of the Meredith March 
     Against Fear, along with 125 allies, resumed the march from 
     the Canton, Mississippi, courthouse, located 15 miles north 
     of Jackson, Mississippi;
       Whereas the number of marchers doubled to approximately 250 
     by the time the Meredith March Against Fear reached the city 
     limits of Canton, Mississippi;
       Whereas 1 mile north of Tougaloo College, the marchers were 
     met by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and hundreds of 
     additional followers;
       Whereas hundreds of supporters were led through the iron-
     rod gate at the main entrance to the Tougaloo campus in 
     Jackson, Mississippi;
       Whereas, on June 26, 1966, the Meredith March Against Fear 
     concluded with a walk from Tougaloo College to the 
     Mississippi State Capitol building in Jackson, Mississippi;
       Whereas approximately 15,000 individuals attended the 
     climactic conclusion of the Meredith March Against Fear, 
     making it the largest civil rights demonstration in the 
     history of the State of Mississippi; and
       Whereas the self-sufficiency and resolve that motivated the 
     Meredith March Against Fear made its leader a revolutionary 
     and a powerful figure in the history of the United States: 
     Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the Senate--
       (1) commemorates the 50th anniversary of the ``James H. 
     Meredith March Against Fear'';
       (2) recognizes the discipline and focus required to 
     complete the James H. Meredith March Against Fear during the 
     most contentious decade in the Civil Rights Movement to 
     encourage African-Americans to defy intimidation and register 
     voters; and
       (3) acknowledges the significance of the James H. Meredith 
     March Against Fear.

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