CHAPEL HILL – Locals gathered at noon in front of the courthouse on Franklin Street Wednesday for a NAACP rally. It’s a part of a 25- county tour targeting the policies of the Republican-led General Assembly.
The demonstration brought people from all backgrounds—including members of the Raging Grannies.
“We have so much to be outraged about these days that we just can’t be silent. Not when the legislature is bringing it back to a time when it was hard for people to vote,” Raging Granny Vicki Ryder said.
Ryder was arrested on May 6 during a “Moral Monday” Protest outside the Legislative Building in Raleigh. Her follow arrest-ees wore orange armbands. During four consecutive weeks of protesting, more than 150 have been arrested.
Speakers at the courthouse included members of the NAACP, activists groups, and local leaders— including Carrboro Mayor Mark Chilton.
His main issue with the General Assembly is what he called “an insidious” attack on voting rights. He believes some politicians are attempting to sway the next election.
“That’s not just unfair—it’s un-American, unconstitutional, and it’s immoral,” Chilton said.
“I haven’t seen anything coming out of Raleigh that doesn’t resemble a train wreck. Regressive is one word. Destructive is my word,” said Carrboro resident Will Wyland.
And Minister Robert Campbell, president of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro NAACP, was there and spoke to the crowd.
“I’m here to make sure that my voice is speaking out as a part of the voice that’s speaking out against injustice that has taken place,” Campbell said. “I want to get other people to be concerned about these same issues. If more people speak out against it—maybe our politicians will begin to listen to the people.”
Gary Kahn, who recently announced he would run for a seat on the Chapel Hill Town Council, also made an appearance.
“I support this protest because basically I want to see the bums in this legislature voted out,” Kahn said.
The NAACP tour will continue its stops across North Carolina through next week. Their protesting will pick-up again this Monday, June 3, outside the General Assembly. NAACP state chapter President Reverend William Barber expects the biggest turnout so far, vowing greater numbers will be arrested.