How to achieve true justice in America (and what that means)
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How to achieve true justice in America (and what that means)

Amid the often-arduous journey towards equality, it’s vital to take a moment to reflect upon where we are.
Illustration of MSNBC host Al Sharpton and a Black Lives Matter protest,
How can we ensure that our society for the next quarter century will be one which works for everyone?MSNBC; Getty Images

Amid the often-arduous journey towards justice and equality, it’s vital to take a moment to reflect upon where we are, the progress that we have achieved and assess where our work remains. In the next 25 years, our job must be to cement the gains made in the last half century and protect everything from voting rights to civil rights as they come under renewed attack. We must reimagine policing, climate change and deal with the racial wealth gap in education, health care, housing and more. In the next 25 years, we must continue to build upon our successes and work to maintain protections that only came to fruition following intense sacrifice generation after generation.

In the next 25 years, our job must be to cement the gains made in the last half century and protect everything from voting rights to civil rights as they come under renewed attack.

Dozens of states are currently trying to change voting laws, with almost 400 bills being pushed in Republican legislatures. These laws could systematically undermine participation in the voting process. We must have a diverse coalition of Americans pushing back against this open assault on democracy. At the same time, we must also address ongoing injustices with policing, and tackle new challenges.

When the catastrophic Covid-19 pandemic hit, disparities in health care, jobs and resources were exposed for everyone to see. Communities of color and poor communities suffered terrible losses, both in terms of lives and livelihoods. Our virtual reality also revealed America’s unequal access to broadband and technology. Kids were told to attend school online when many didn’t even have internet capabilities or a computer at home. As we look towards the future, we must take measurable steps to equalize broadband and other tech so that no student, teacher or parent is left behind.

Securing the right to vote, breaking down Jim Crow laws and integrating our society was no easy feat. The fact that people like Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Medgar Evers and so many others did it without cell phones, social media or even a fax machine is a remarkable achievement. With rotary phones, the telegram and word of mouth, these courageous men and women changed the social landscape of the nation. We have so many more ways to communicate today, but less tangible victories to show for them. It is incumbent upon us to harness these many mechanisms, unify around key issues like voter protection and police reform, and strive to equalize technology so that our society for the next quarter century will be one which works for everyone.

Or in other words, true justice for all.