Fired up and ready to work for the second year in a row, Texas Southern University’s chapter of NAACP orchestrated its March To The Polls for Election Day 2011.
Stormy weather throughout the city of Houston did not stop the students and supporters. They met in the student center to go over chants, pass out signs and made sure every supporter had an NAACP t-shirt.
The organization was able to round up of dozens of students, alumni, faculty and staff to walk down to Lockheart Elementary in order to cast their ballot for the local Houston elections.
TSU’s own Miss Texas Southern University 2011-2012, Shartajeye Wright marched down Tierwester, in heels, and representatives of Alpha Phi Alpha and Phi Beta Sigma fraternity and Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority were in attendance.
As they occupied the streets of Houston’s third ward belting out chants of encouragement and a soul stirring rendition of “Lift Every Voice,” they garnered much attention from the local and national media.
Last year’s march for the 2010 midterm election received praise from the national headquarters of NAACP and this year received local television coverage on FOX 26 news.
Several events have been put together specifically to get students registered to vote. Over the last two years they have gotten over 600 students registered to vote.
“We just want to make sure that we take the responsibility to vote so we don’t complain about the issues of the future,” NAACP President Jylise Smith, said.
Founded in 1909, the Youth & College Division of NAACP strives to inform teens and young adults of the problems affecting African Americans and other racial and ethnic groups.
In the Houston area, voting officials said that there were only about 12 percent of registered voters at the polls during this election, according to KHOU.
Despite a lack luster turnout city-wide, TSU’s chapter of NAACP has cultivated a campaign of its own to make sure the community gets out to cast their ballots.
By hosting events and rallies like this, they continue to develop intelligent, militant and effective young leaders.
Keeping the public aware of youth involvement in service projects anchored in political and community activism is of the upmost importance.
Second Vice President of NAACP, Dwayne Adams, explains.
“Voting is a privilege and we just want to make sure that the youth understand that their voice is the voice of change and they have the power to make sure that history never repeats itself,” Adams said.