‘ Civil War Soldier Cushing Receives Medal of Honour’

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – DELAFIELD – September 25 – A 94-year-old woman has been fighting for decades to see a Civil War soldier honoured for his sacrifice on the battlefield.

If you’re from Delafield you might recognize the name “Cushing,” but you may not know the story of the man behind the name.

Sitting along the Bark River, Margaret Zerwekh feels a special connection to the man who lived on the land a century and a half ago. 

Since she moved to Delafield in the 1980s, Zerwekh has held a deep respect for Alonzo Cushing, whose face is carved into a monument in Cushing Memorial Park.

' Alonzo Cushing '

‘ Alonzo Cushing ‘

Alonzo Cushing was born along the Bark River in 1841.  A lieutenant during the Civil War, Cushing’s actions during the Battle of Gettysburg helped secure a victory for the Union.

' Battle of Gettysburg 1863 '

‘ Battle of Gettysburg 1863 ‘

“Leading his 110 men and six cannons, he was gravely wounded a number of times and his unit was decimated by artillery fire.  Instead of retreating, Alonzo asked for permission for move his gun forward.  As he was growing weaker, he wouldn’t desert his men or his position,” said David Krueger of Delafield.

At 22-years-old, Cushing’s life ended on the battle field.

' Cushing's Memorial Headstone in Comemeration of a Brave Man'

‘ Cushing’s Memorial Headstone in Commemoration of a Brave Man’

Cushing’s legacy lives on in Delafield at Cushing Memorial Park, Cushing Road and Cushing Elementary School.  At Gettysburg, there’s a stone monument marking the place he died.

Zerwekh was troubled by the honor Cushing never received: the Medal of Honor.

“He gave his life and he was not recognized at the time, ” said Zerwekh.

In 1987, Margaret started petitioning lawmakers.  She has a folder filled with decades of correspondence.

The Medal of Honor was not awarded posthumously during the Civil War.  Thanks to Zerwekh, Congress just passed some new legislation. 

It makes it possible to waive the requirement that Medal of Honor recommendations be made within two years and awarded within three.

' Medal of Honour Gettysburg '

‘ Medal of Honour Gettysburg ‘

Cushing is being awarded the Medal of Honor this fall.

The U.S. Army will accept the medal on Cushing’s behalf.  Where the medal will end up is unclear.  Zerwekh thinks it should go to Delafield so it can be on display.

Source:

#AH2RN2014

#alonso-cushing, #bark-river, #civil-war, #congress, #cushing, #delafield, #gettysburg, #posthumously, #us-army

‘ Voting Rights Act 1965 Section 5 Ruled Unconstitutional in 2013 by Congress ‘

#AceHistory2ResearchNews – September 22 – The Voting Rights Act of 1965 is a landmark piece of American federal legislation that prohibits racial discrimination in voting. President Lyndon B.

' Lyndon Johnson and Martin Luther King Jnr '  Bill of Rights

‘ Lyndon Johnson and Martin Luther King Jnr ‘
Bill of Rights

Johnson signed the Act into law (pictured) during the height of the Civil Rights Movement on August 6, 1965, and Congress later amended it five times.

' Second Two '

‘ Section Two ‘   

The Act allowed for a mass enfranchisement of racial minorities across the country, especially in the South. Section 2 of the Act prohibits state and local governments from imposing any voting law that has a discriminatory effect on racial or language minorities, and other provisions specifically ban literacy-tests and similar discriminatory devices.

' Section Five Covered Jurisdications '

‘ Section Five Covered Jurisdiction’s ‘

Some provisions apply only to jurisdictions covered by the Act’s “coverage formula”, which was designed to encompass jurisdictions that engaged in egregious voting discrimination.

Chiefly, Section 5 prohibits these jurisdictions from changing their election practices without first receiving approval from the federal government that the change is not discriminatory.

In Shelby County v. Holder (2013), the Supreme Court struck down the coverage formula as unconstitutional, reasoning that it no longer responded to current conditions.

Shelby County v. Holder, 570 U.S. ___(2013), is a landmark United States Supreme Court case regarding the constitutionality of two provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965: Section 5, which requires certain states and local governments to obtain federal pre-clearance before implementing any changes to their voting laws or practices; and Section 4(b), which contains the coverage formula that determines which jurisdictions are subjected to pre-clearance based on their histories of discrimination in voting.

On June 25, 2013, the Court ruled by a 5-to-4 vote that Section 4(b) is unconstitutional because the coverage formula is based on data over 40 years old, making it no longer responsive to current needs and therefore an impermissible burden on the constitutional principles of federalism and equal sovereignty of the states.

The Court did not strike down Section 5, but without Section 4(b), no jurisdiction will be subject to Section 5 pre-clearance unless Congress enacts a new coverage formula.

#AH2RN2014


#american, #civil-rights-movement, #congress, #jurisdications, #literacy-tests, #president-lyndon-b-johnson, #racial, #the-voting-rights-act-1965

` First Amendment to the ` United States Constitution ‘ Prohibits Making Any Law Abridging the ‘ Freedom of Speech ‘

#AceHistory2Research – UNITED STATES – March 29 – The First Amendment (Amendment I) to the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion, abridging the freedom of speech, infringing on the freedom of the press, interfering with the right to peaceably assemble or prohibiting the petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances. It was adopted on December 15, 1791, as one of the ten amendments that comprise the Bill of Rights.

The Bill of Rights was originally proposed as a measure to assuage Anti-Federalist opposition to Constitutional ratification. Initially, the First Amendment applied only to laws enacted by the Congress, and many of its provisions were interpreted more narrowly than they are today. Beginning with Gitlow v. New York (1925), the Supreme Court applied the First Amendment to states—a process known as incorporation—through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

In Everson v. Board of Education (1947), the Court drew on Founding Father Thomas Jefferson’s correspondence to call for “a wall of separation between church and State”, though the precise boundary of this separation remains in dispute. Speech rights were expanded significantly in a series of 20th and 21st-century court decisions which protected various forms of political speech, anonymous speech, campaign financing, pornography, and school speech; these rulings also defined a series of exceptions to First Amendment protections.

The Supreme Court overturned English common law precedent to increase the burden of proof for defamation and libel suits, most notably in New York Times Co. v. Sullivan (1964). Commercial speech, however, is less protected by the First Amendment than political speech, and is therefore subject to greater regulation.

The Free Press Clause protects publication of information and opinions, and applies to a wide variety of media. In Near v. Minnesota (1931) and New York Times v. United States (1971), the Supreme Court ruled that the First Amendment protected against prior restraint—pre-publication censorship—in almost all cases. The Petition Clause protects the right to petition all branches and agencies of government for action. In addition to the right of assembly guaranteed by this clause, the Court has also ruled that the Amendment implicitly protects freedom of association.

MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL:

In 1776, the second year of the American Revolutionary War, the Virginia colonial legislature passed a Declaration of Rights that included the sentence “The freedom of the press is one of the greatest bulwarks of liberty, and can never be restrained but by despotic Governments.” Eight of the other thirteen states made similar pledges. However, these declarations were generally considered “mere admonitions to state legislatures”, rather than enforceable provisions.

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#congress, #first-amendment, #free-speech, #new-york-times, #thomas-jefferson, #united-states