Blog Posts: Theodore M. Shaw (Ted)

Theodore M. Shaw (Ted)

The UNC Center for Civil Rights Commemorates the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Holiday

In 2017, as our nation commemorates the birth of D. Martin Luther King, Jr., we stand on the precipice of the inauguration of a new president of the United States. Our country is walking an uncertain path, divided by race, class, and partisanship. We collectively tend to remember Dr. King as one whose dreams gently prodded the United States away from segregation and discrimination by appealing to a sympathetic majority of Americans who supported his agenda. We further like to think about his work as having been largely accomplished, as we live in a largely post-racial society. We at the UNC Center for Civil Rights acknowledge the profoundly significant progress we have made as a nation on issues of race. Yet we also recognize the persistence of structural inequality and stubborn racism that continues to define important aspects of American life.

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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Tue. January 17, 2017 9:17 AM
Categories: General

Looking at the Path Ahead

The long and contentious election season is over, and Donald J. Trump is the President-elect of the United States. The 2016 election will have profound results for our country and the world. Among the most important impacts will be the civil and constitutional rights of the citizens and people of the United States.

The UNC Center for Civil Rights is a non-partisan entity. Its mission is the advancement of civil rights in North Carolina, the south, and the nation, and the training of new generations of civil rights lawyers. While we are non-partisan, we are compelled to acknowledge the effects of partisan politics on civil rights. We did not create this reality, and if we could choose, there would be no partisan alignment on civil rights issues.


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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Tue. November 15, 2016 4:49 PM
Categories: General, Race Discrimination

4th Circuit Strikes Down North Carolina's Voter ID Law

Today the U.S Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit reversed decisions of the North Carolina Federal District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina in consolidated cases challenging sweeping restrictions on voting rights enacted by the North Carolina legislature. We are heartened by the Appellate Court’s decision today, which, taken with a similar decision by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals which covers Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas, constitutes a significant turn against racial discrimination in electoral politics.
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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Fri. July 29, 2016 2:43 PM
Categories: Amicus Curiae, Race Discrimination, Voting Rights

2015 UNC Center for Civil Rights Year in Review

As we approach the end of 2015, I have been reflecting on the events of the last year and a half, and the work of The Center for Civil Rights.  Since coming to UNC in June of 2014, I have been immersed in the history and the contemporary workings of North Carolina. As an attorney for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund for twenty-five years, and the Justice Department before that, I litigated civil rights cases all over the South, including North Carolina.  I have deep family roots in the state, including relatives known and unknown. Yet, it is one thing to know a place from a distance and even to spend time there, and quite another to live here.
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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Mon. December 21, 2015 10:34 AM
Categories: General

Addressing Trump's Remarks on the Exclusion of Muslims

Statement of Theodore M. Shaw, Julius L. Chambers Distinguished Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Civil Rights Regarding Donald Trump’s Position on the Exclusion of Muslims

The Center for Civil Rights does not take positions on partisan political matters. Political neutrality, however, does not require that we stand mute in the face of discriminatory statements and actions that marginalize individuals on the basis of race, gender, religious belief, sexual orientation, disability, age, or any other protected classification. This is especially true for the Center for Civil Rights, which has as its mission the protection of individuals against unlawful discrimination and the advocacy of civil and human rights.


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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Wed. December 9, 2015 9:29 AM
Categories: General, Race Discrimination

After Charleston

The tragic massacre of nine African Americans as they worshipped in an historic Charleston, South Carolina church is yet another reminder of the persistence of racism in America. Its aftermath is also a window into our distorted and tortured discourse on race. In the days, weeks and months preceding this horrific event, across the country Americans wrestled with a series of deaths of unarmed black men at the hands of law enforcement, until Rachel Dolezal’s racial identity captivated our attention. But the issue of a white woman’s self-professed identification as black has been swept away by the brutal execution of nine African Americans by a young white supremacist.

- Theodore M. Shaw, Julius L. Chambers Distinguished Professor of Law and Director of the UNC Center for Civil Rights, University of North Carolina School of Law at Chapel Hill


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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Fri. June 26, 2015 2:31 PM
Categories: General, Race Discrimination

Statement of Theodore M. Shaw, Julius L. Chambers Distinguished Professor of Law and Director of the UNC Center for Civil Rights

The criticism of The UNC Center for Civil Rights by some members of the Board of Governors’ Committee on Centers lies along two axes of allegedly inappropriate activities. First, they allege that The Center does advocacy work, which they contend does not belong within a university, because it is one-sided. Second, they contend that the Center sues the State, and that is inappropriate.


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Posted by Theodore M. Shaw (Ted) on Fri. February 27, 2015 3:26 PM
Categories: General

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