Mexican President Vicente Fox Invited To Annual Convention

Board Chair Julian Bond said convention offers Fox an opportunity to explain recent comments

Julian Bond, Chairman, NAACP National Board of Directors, has invited Mexican President Vicente Fox to address the annual NAACP Convention, which meets from July 10-14 in Milwaukee's Midwest Airlines Center.

In a letter to President Fox, Bond said: "Your recent comments about Mexican migrants doing work that 'not even blacks want to do' have understandably caused great concern among our members, and indeed among all who believe in equal rights. Our convention offers you a unique opportunity to explain your comments and detail your efforts at erasing racial enmity to the largest collection of civil rights activists in the United States."

Although the convention program is tightly scheduled, Bond said, "We would willingly find time for you to make a presentation to the full body. You will be received with all the honors and respect attendant to your position."

Chairman Bond said: "We are justifiably proud of our many efforts to find common cause with citizens of all races, and with our growing immigrant population. This is not a new concern ? for all of our 96 years, we've believed in building coalitions and communications with all persons of good will, native born or newly arrived. Most recently, before the horror of 9/11 created an undue climate of hostility among some, we had embraced your plans for easing US restrictions on immigrant workers, many of them Mexicans. We've often said that in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored people, colored people come in all colors."

The NAACP is the United States' oldest and largest civil rights organization, dedicated for 96 years to achieving equality for African-Americans and fighting racial discrimination against anyone. Its half-million members in 2200 local units scattered throughout the 50 states, Europe and the Pacific are the front-line grass roots troops for racial justice in their communities.

CONTACT: NAACP Office of Communications 410.580.5125

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