Tuesday 29 November 2022
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Randall Woodfin: A Son of Birmingham Becomes its Mayor

Op/Ed By Marc Morial –


marcmoriall( – “Local assemblies of citizens constitute the strength of free nations. Town-meetings are to liberty what primary schools are to science; they bring it within the people’s reach, they teach men how to use and how to enjoy it. A nation may establish a system of free government, but without the spirit of municipal institutions it cannot have the spirit of liberty.”  — Alexis de Tocqueville, Author, “Democracy in America,” 1835

The first line of Randall Woodfin’s official autobiography on his mayoral campaign website is: “I am a proud son of Birmingham.” In our nation’s history, Birmingham, Alabama will forever be tied to some of the most troubling and tragic imagery of the civil rights movement—from the bombing of a church that killed four innocent little girls to African Americans braving fire hoses, police batons and attack dogs in their struggle to end racial discrimination and secure basic rights. While we have yet to wipe out discrimination and its attendant consequences, our nation—including Birmingham— has made some progress. The proud son of a city once tarnished as regressive and hostile to the plight of its African-American residents, will lead its 23 communities and 99 neighborhoods on a progressive platform as its next mayor.

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