Mary White Ovington and William Edward Burghardt (W.E.B.) Dubois

Mary White Ovington and William Edward Burghardt (W.E.B.) DuBois were the two principal founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909. Ovington was one of the people that issued “the call” to civil rights activists of the time to form the organization. DuBois was among the most influential black leaders of the 20th century. He helped form the “Niagara Movement” as a way to work for an end to segregation, discrimination and the denial of voting and civil rights. He was among those who responded to Ovington’s “call” and merged his group into the NAACP.

Social issues Mary White Orvington & W.E.B. DuBois addressed:

  • Civil rights
  • Poverty
  • Voting rights
  • Discrimination

Social issues that need to be addressed today:

  • Civil Rights - The Civil Rights Act of 1964 outlawed unequal application of voter registration requirements and racial segregation in schools, the workplace and by facilities that serve the general public. Even though we have made progress, prejudice and racism are still with us. The need to protect the equal rights of all is as important as ever. Source "Hate Crime Statistics, 2008 U.S. Department of Justice Federal Bureau of Investigation November 2009"
  • Poverty - Approximately 46.7 million are living in poverty (2014). This statement currently has 2013 as the referenced year. Source
  • Voting rights- In comparison to the election of 2008, about 1.7 million additional Black voters reported going to the polls in 2012, as did about 1.4 million additional Hispanics and about 550,000 additional Asians. Source
  • Discrimination - In the US, 19.6% of high school students report being bullied at school in the past year. 14.8% reported being bullied online. The reasons for being bullied reported most often by students were looks (55%), body shape (37%), and race (16%). School-based bullying prevention programs decrease bullying by up to 25%. Source