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Meet Amazing Americans Activists & Reformers W.E.B. Du Bois
British NAACP protesters with anti-lynching posters.
Members of the British arm of the NAACP protest against American violence against blacks

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W.E.B. Du Bois and the NAACP
The NAACP was founded on the belief that nonviolent protests and legal actions were the best ways to ensure equal rights for all Americans. Du Bois became a member of the NAACP board and edited a journal of opinions called The Crisis. During its early years, the association won many legal cases to ensure the rights of minorities.

In 1917, for example, the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional an ordinance (a type of law) in Louisville, Kentucky, that required blacks to live in certain sections of the city. The NAACP won the case because the ordinance violated the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which clearly states that all people are entitled to equal protection under the law. In 1923, the association won another case when the Supreme Court decided that blacks could not be excluded from juries because doing so denied those accused of crimes of a fair trial. Do you know why excluding blacks from juries could make a trial unfair?

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