President of North Carolina’s NAACP to speak at Moral March to Polls Rally in Shelby

The Rev. William Barber II, president of North Carolina’s NAACP and architect of the “Moral Monday” demonstrations, will speak Monday at a March to the Polls Rally in Shelby.

The event, which includes voter registration, begins at 5:30 p.m. on the lawn of the Earl Scruggs Center at 103 S. Lafayette St.

The “Moral Mondays” demonstrations started during North Carolina’s 2013 legislative session as Republican majorities that control the state’s House and Senate passed a number of laws that the NAACP opposed.

About 900 people were arrested at protests during the 2013 legislative session and an additional 100 during this year’s.

The Rev. Dante Murphy, president of the Cleveland County NAACP, said the focus of Monday’s rally is on voting.

“That’s what it’s all about,” he said. “We’re concentrating on getting people to the polls. That’s one way we believe change can occur.”

While Barber’s talk on Monday may touch on examples he’s cited before of harmful policies enacted by conservative legislators, Murphy said “the big push is voter registration.”

“We’ll be registering people during the rally,” he said. “We want to really motivate people to get out and vote on Election Day.”