Retired judge likens threats to voting rights to World War II military maneuver

Posted at 1:04 PM, Jul 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-21 05:25:08-04

CINCINNATI -- The 107th annual NAACP Convention spent its final day focused on crime, the courts and judicial reform.

At a panel discussion Wednesday morning before several hundred delegates, a host of experienced judges outlined the role courts play on issues such as mandatory sentencing and education.


Retired federal Judge Nathaniel Jones specifically addressed the issue of voting rights: He likened the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling allowing nine states to change voting rules without federal approval to the pincer movement of World War II, where the voting rights of African-Americans and the disenfranchised are being politically and judicially compromised.

"Unless we are mindful, all these gains we've talked about since 1954 will be obliterated, and it will be somewhat like a person who had his throat cut and didn't realize it until he tries to shake his head," Jones said.

Shortly after the hour-and-a-half session, Jones collapsed from dehydration and overheating; his assistant said he was doing fine.

RELATED: Jones collapses but is OK

Later Wednesday, the Rev. Al Sharpton was similarly blunt: He called Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's policies wicked, unfair and divisive, not the kinds of things that would make America great again for everyone.


"We are not anti-white, not anti-police," Sharpton said. "It's principalities, wickedness in high places. When you don't want your mama to have health care 'cause President Obama put it through, that's wicked. When you don't want people who fight in wars and pay taxes to have the right to vote, that's wicked."

Sharpton ended by encouraging younger delegates to continue carrying the banner of equality.