"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by General Manager, Nick Simonette.
If you're around 60 years old or better, you probably remember a day when "separate but equal" was the norm.
You may have seen pictures of water fountains or rest rooms labeled "whites only."
You may know that African-Americans had to sit in the balconies of movie theatres, or that they were restricted to "the back of the bus."
Well, 60 years ago this month, that began to change.
The Earl Warren Supreme Court unanimously ruled that "separate but equal" was inherently "unequal."
The case is known as "Brown versus the Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas."
The Court said that even if black school facilities and teachers actually were equal in quality to their white counterparts,
the notion that black students should be segregated from their white peers was both harmful and a violation of their "equal protection" rights.
The Supreme Court's decision in May of 1954 was just the beginning of a long battle to bring equality in treatment to the races.
One that is still not finished even today.
But it was a historical and long overdue beginning.
We invite you to join us for a special program on the subject.
Steve Crump hosts "Brown at 60," Wednesday, May 14th at 7:30, here on WBTV.