February 14, 2017

Our show this week on Tuesday, February 14th, 12:00-1:00 PM EST, looks at the special historic and present role of Black lawyers in the fight for racial justice in the United States and internationally. Many have been surprised to see private and public interest lawyers confronting the Trump Administration in the courts nationwide regarding the Muslim Ban. Many have also noted that Black lawyers and Black law students have often been in the forefront of those providing legal protection during protests for Black Lives Matter. Is this a new era of Black legal activism? Are Black lawyers doing enough?

Our special guests to help discuss this topic include Mark Dunham, Regional Chair of the Mid-Atlantic Black Law Students Association; Kevin Judd, President of the National Bar Association and others will join us to discuss this major subject.

A hallmark of Black History Month is the story of the Black lawyers who fought for racial justice. From historical figures like Paul Cuffee, Lucy Terry Prince in the 18th Century to Charles Hamilton Houston, Justice Thurgood Marshall, Sadie Alexander, Constance Baker Motley, Spottswood Robinson, Barbara Jordan, Patricia Robert Harris, Oliver Hill, Fred Gray, Wiley Branton, Pauli Murray, Flo Kennedy and Judge Leon A. Higginbotham and so many other iconic figures, the sacrifices of Black lawyers have become legendary in our racial justice movement.

Last November, thousands of lawyers and law students provided Election Protection throughout the nation. Black lawyers were instrumental in the successful litigation in the federal courts challenging the Texas and North Carolina voter suppression laws. NBLSA filed a letter of opposition to the nomination of Jefferson Sessions as Attorney General.

Yet the numbers of African American attorneys in the US remain stubbornly low at 5%, 61,000, of the roughly 1.4 million lawyers in our nation. Law school remains extremely expensive. Law firms are very racially segregated. African Americans suffer from the paltry representation of Black lawyers and the tremendous biases embedded in a dominant White civil and criminal legal system.

We will discuss the role of the Black lawyer in these times. What can be done to support more Blacks to join the legal profession? As Charles Hamilton Houston postulated decades ago: How can Black lawyers be social engineers instead of parasites on society? What role will Black lawyers play in confronting the policies of the Trump Administration over the next four years? With AG Jeff Sessions at the DOJ, is there a new role for the NBLSA and the NBA?

Be sure to listen live on Tuesday, February 14th, 12:00-1:00 PM, in the DC Metro Region at WOL 1450 AM, and on the Internet at www.BarbaraArnwine.com.

You can call in with questions or comments at 800-450-7876. A podcast of the show will be posted on Tuesday evening!

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Adjoa Aiyetoro

Professor Adjoa Aiyetoro has been a leading voice in ending racial disparities in the criminal justice system locally, statewide, and nationally. Her public service centers […]

Kevin D Judd

Kevin D. Judd is a proactive and strategic person, who is grounded by progressive leadership and service. In organization and business settings, he has developed […]

Mark A Dunham Jr

Mark Anthony Dunham, Jr., serves as the 2016-2017 Mid-Atlantic Regional Chair for the National Black Law Students Association (“NBLSA”). In this role, he exercises general […]