Thurgood Marshall – the lawyer for the “little man.”

Thurgood marshall.jpg

On August 30th, 1967, Thurgood Marshall became the first African American to be confirmed as a Supreme Court justice.

I was speaking with Darron my colleague – He is also African american and had worked somewhere up in the echelons of the pentagon – He recollected names as if he just read them in the morning pages.

Stokely Carmichael – Trinidadian-American who became a prominent figure in the Civil Rights Movement and the global Pan-African movement.

Dorothy Irene Height – the president of the National Council of Negro Women for forty years and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1994 and the Congressional Gold Medal in 2004

Shirley Anita Chisholm – she became the first black woman elected to the United States Congress

Sheila Crump Johnson co-founder of BET, CEO of Salamander Hotels and Resorts, and the first African-American woman to attain a net worth of at least one billion dollars.

Barbara Charline Jordan. The first African American elected to the Texas Senate after Reconstruction, the first Southern African-American woman elected to the United States House of Representatives.

Darron called them the political legal prong of the African American struggle for justice. The Black Intelligentsia

Thurgood Marshall’s parents instilled in him the appreciation for the US Constitution. Local Howard university connection also! After graduating from Lincoln University in 1930, Marshall sought admission to the University of Maryland School of Law, but was turned away because of the school’s segregation policy, which effectively forbade blacks from studying with whites. Instead, Marshall attended Howard University Law School, from which he graduated magna cum laude in 1933. (Marshall later successfully sued Maryland School of Law for their unfair admissions policy.)

Marshall won 29 of the 32 cases he argued in front of the Supreme Court, all of which challenged in some way the ‘separate but equal’ doctrine that had been established by the landmark case Plessy v. Ferguson (1896). The high-water mark of Marshall’s career as a litigator came in 1954 with his victory in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka. In that case, Marshall argued that the ‘separate but equal’ principle was unconstitutional, and designed to keep blacks “as near slavery as possible.”

Awesome Mr. Marshall, sir!



Leave a Reply