Go here to read LEO’s package of stories and excerpts from Black Scene, a cultural and political magazine published in The West End during the 1970s and now is being resurrected by local writers and photographers.
As a registered voter of the Twelfth Ward, I am deeply disturbed with the position given to a Black Alderwoman from The West End of Louisville. As you know, in the last election, there were record turnouts of voters in The West End who elected the present Board of Aldermen and the Mayor. The people of The West End, were lead to believe that these newly elected officials would serve the entire community impartially. However, the recent appointments made by the president of the Board of Alderman and auctioned by the mayor, seem to exclude the Black Alderwoman from any meaningful committee assignment. The Black Alderwoman, Mrs. Lois Morris, now holds the position of Chairman of the Human Relations Committee. This committee in theory, secures jobs for individuals and handles complaints. In reality, these functions are not enacted.
Many Blacks in The West End find this somewhat of an insult when this Black official is just as qualified, if not more, to hold the very position that her administrators execute. For instance Mrs. Morris has four years experience on the Board of Aldermen. She is second in seniority to only one other alderman. She is a former teacher in many areas of the United States, on the high school and college level, with postgraduate training in Government, Political Science and International Law. For two years, Mrs. Morris served on the Louisville Human Relations Commission. As a board member, she has served many positions on the standing and Ad Hoc Committees. Also, Mrs. Morris has been to several seminars across the country. Recently, she attended the League of Cities Meeting in San Juan, Puerto Rico, a Convention held to work toward solving common problems in municipal government. I believe that this type of dedication and enthusiasm proves that Mrs. Morris is committed to making Louisville an “All American City.”
A great deal of consideration should he given to placing this Black Alderwoman on a functional and meaningful committee. Black people in this country now regard the Black elected officials as the “cutting edge of the civil rights movement.” All too often, Black officials are placed on irrelevant committees or given “back hill” assignments that are insignificant to their purpose and keeps them inactive on the working political scene.
The Blacks who voted in this past election were promised greater representation in jobs, more representatives on boards and commissions, and greater representation in policy making, and an active part in matters that affect the lives of Black citizens from day to day.
The many Blacks who voted for this group in the past election urge that this Black Alderwoman be appointed to a more meaningful position that is of immediate concern to everyone. —Ray Hudson