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07
Mar
2018

LaTosha Brown: Matters Beyond the Vote

By ,

LaTosha Brown

A standing-room crowd gathered at our K Street office to meet LaTosha Brown, one of the Alabama architects of the stunning December defeat of an accused pedophile and self-professed segregationist.

Beyond beating the odds, Alabama’s Black voters demolished them. An unprecedented turnout rendered a trouncing, solidified by Black women delivering a 98 percent rejection.

With an ever-present grin and hands clasped, Brown takes center-floor. All wait for the talk to begin. Instead, she commands the room with a freedom song.

The only thing we did was right
Was the day we started to fight
Keep your eyes on the prize, hold on
Hold on, hold on
Keep your eyes on the prize, hold on

By the second verse, the audience joins in, hands clapping and feet tapping. LaTosha Brown hums down the rallying hymn to applause and shouts of “Go girl!”

The grin becomes a toothy smile. “That’s how we won!”

LaTosha Brown starts most public speeches with a freedom song, saying it personifies that child of Selma’s passions. Professional vocalist. Philanthropist. Political activist – threads weaving the fabric of her preoccupation with Black self-determination.

Brown, joining with friend Cliff Albright, is co-founder of the Black Voters Matter Fund (BVMF). The young organization tested its nettle eight days before the Alabama special Senate election, moving $200,000 to 32 grassroots organizations, funding everything from door knockers to fuel to ferry voters to the poll.

Brown said BVMF will target five southern states leading into the 2018 mid-term elections, certain that the calculus is not blue or red, but Black.

“We are committed to power-building in Black communities beyond election cycles and candidates,” explains Brown. “Black votes matter even when the folks don’t matter to the people who care about the votes.”