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Refusing to Cooperate with Injustice: The 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act
By: Emory Brown
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Over 50 years ago, America was in a very bad place as an international brand. People around the world tuned in as American youth fought for the rights that were due to them based on the Constitution. African American men and women, young and old, marched, shouted, and stood firmly against the injustices that had tormented them since the days of slavery. They rebranded the view of African Americans in the eyes of the world from a people that were to be pitied into a people who would fight against injustice on every battlefield in which it reared its ugly face.

On July 2, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act, a paramount piece of legislation created to empower people from various walks of life to truly have the liberties that all American citizens should enjoy regardless of race, color, or creed.
 
Since the signing of this act, America has been in a state of transformation. We have witnessed equality and justice become a norm in American society. America has come closer and closer to Martin Luther King’s dream in which all of God’s children can live in harmony and love. Corporate America, a place once dominated by white males, is now a place where women and people of color are celebrated for their talents. Schools are filled with kids who sit at lunch tables together and play on sports teams together and win national championships and embrace the joy of victory, not giving notice to their teammates’ cultural background as a diminishing addition to the team.

Civil Rights is a brand based on two core words. One is “civility,” which means to have “a formal politeness, and courtesy in behavior or speech.” The second is “rights,” — what is entitled to someone. Our courageous men and women who stood and continue to stand boldly against injustice have branded and continue to brand the beauty of Civil Rights in the hearts and minds of generations now and to come with actions that defy the predefined norms. With words that move millions and speeches that have tumbled the enemies of change.
 
May the Civil Rights leaders of yesterday, today, and tomorrow remember that only through action can we create the change that will leave a brand impression for civility. 


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About the Author
Emory Brown is an award-winning creative director/writer whose mission is to spread the gospel of what great marketers can do when they put their heads together and work together for the greater good and not the bottom line. Working with many esteemed clients, his portfolio of work ranges in genre from conservative to ultra-modern including American Family Insurance, United Airlines, Mazda 6 and RX-8, Illinois Lottery, Tyson, Miller Genuine Draft, Nike Air Force 1, and Mercedes Benz, to name a few.  
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