Dothan Residents Look Back on the Civil Rights Act


Wednesday marked 50 years since President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law.

Ledora Cummings was a teenager in Dothan when the sweeping piece of legislation became law.

"When I was growing up, you couldn't go but so far," explains Cummings. "When that barrier did break, the shell was broken."

The law banned discrimination and segregation in the workplace and schools, giving equal protection under the law for all, especially for African-Americans.

But the break was not instantaneous.

"We've gotten better in our cohabitation, but we've gotten far worse when it comes to economics, the justice system and the voter representation," says Reverend Kenneth Glasgow, a Dothan-based activist. "These are things we have to look at."

Despite the challenges that lie ahead, Cummings says it has been incredible to see how far America has come in her lifetime.

"You see more blacks going into everything. Just stepping mission after mission," she says.

Those steps are the results of a vision that came one step closer to being a reality on July 2, 1964.


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