I was really sad to read about Connie Parker’s death in last week’s Courier (Aug. 2). She wasn’t able to accomplish all she wanted to but she gave it an all-out effort.
Connie was one of those people who was deeply concerned and committed about the overall living conditions of Black people, but because she wasn’t a great speaker and a modest person, she served in the background most of her 25 years with the Pittsburgh NAACP.
Even though her death was a shock, it wasn’t unexpected because of the strokes and other health and physical problems as a result. But she hung in there to the very end, fighting for Black people’s rights.
She often complained about the lack of participation by the youth, not only with the NAACP, but with all organizations and groups fighting for our rights. When she took over as president in 2012, getting youth involved was her primary goal, but her health and the lack of interest in the NAACP by youth blocked her path.
However, she was already fighting an uphill battle because of the national NAACP’s lack of leadership. The national chapter has done nothing the last several years to attract the attention of older people, let alone young people in any walk of life. The last big effort was by Ben Jealous, national president, asking people to march to Washington D.C. to protest conditions of the Black masses. People are tired of marching —give them something concrete to do to better conditions for the masses of Blacks which is getting worse. The local branches could be a whole lot more effective if they had some kind of guidance and money from the national.