Activists Criticize Houston NAACP For Honoring Harris County DA

The Houston N.A.A.C.P today honored the Harris County District Attorney for her efforts to lower incarceration rates, but some activists are criticizing their decision.

Activists hold signs in protest outside the NAACP award ceremony where Devon Anderson was honored.
Activists protest outside the NAACP award ceremony where Devon Anderson was honored.

Leaders in Houston’s African American community honored Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson for her First Chance Intervention Program. It’s designed to prevent prosecution for low-level marijuana possession. Anderson says more than 1,900 people have completed the program since it launched in 2014.

“And let me say, getting this award, this is a seal of approval for us,” Ander says. “Thank you for recognizing it, NAACP. I appreciate it.”

But outside the ceremony, about a dozen protestors gathered carrying signs with slogans like, “NAACP sold out.” One of them was Ashton Woods. He says many activists feel that Anderson unfairly criticized the Black Lives Matter movement after last year’s shooting death of Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy Darren Goforth.

“Black Lives Matter does not condone the killing of police officers,” Woods says. “We do recognize that if our house catches on fire or if we have a heart attack, we have to dial 9-1-1. Also, knowing the fact that we pay taxes to be able to benefit from those services.”

Woods says until Anderson apologizes for those comments, she shouldn’t be honored by the black community.

We reached out to Anderson’s office for a response. She was not immediately available.


Tomeka Weatherspoon

Tomeka Weatherspoon

Senior Producer

Tomeka Weatherspoon is an Emmy-award winning producer. She produces segments, the weekly television program Arts InSight, the short film showcase The Territory and a forthcoming digital series on innovation. Originally from the Midwest, Tomeka studied convergence journalism from the world’s first journalism school at the University of Missouri. She has...

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